2.3 million

Approx. 2.3 million people worldwide suffer from multiple sclerosis

source: MSIF

$ 100 billion

Approx. $ 100 billion cost for the health care system for treating autoimmune diseases

source: MD Magazine

Research Thesis

  • Autoimmune disease exacerbations are currently detected either too late or are subject to enormous diagnostic expenses (such as MRI in MS).
  • Every autoimmune disease involves inflammatory processes that correlate with changes in body core temperature.
  • These inflammatory processes might be reflected in individual temperature patterns.
  • We will likely be able to identify the temperature pattern and predict relapses more effectively.
  • This allows treatment to be tailored to individual exacerbations and the respective clinical course of the autoimmune disease.

Medical Need

  • Diagnostic methods for early exacerbation detection to enable tailored treatment to individual clinical course.

Solution

  • A digital diagnostic platform using intelligent medical algorithms for identifying and analyzing core temperature and exacerbation patterns.
  • The platform combines sensor-based wearables for continuous biological data measurement with high-resolution software for medical evaluation.
  • The platform’s integrated patient journal according to autoimmune disease guidelines allows remote patient monitoring with real-time alerts against an imminent exacerbation.
  • This also allows rapid response to alerts with a change in treatment.

Research Status

Multiple Sclerosis (MS)

A study on patients with exacerbation-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) (Sumowski 2014) found a general increase in core body temperature amongst the patients, and fatigue exacerbation accompanied by an increase in body-core temperature.

Fatigue (persistent fatigue, exhaustion and listlessness) severely impairs patient quality of life but is still one of the most difficult MS symptoms to treat (Sumowski 2014); the difficulty in detecting fatigue up to now exacerbates the problem. Recent research results allow more effective diagnosis towards developing therapeutic approaches, such as targeted administration of medicines to lower core body temperature and alleviate or prevent an imminent bout of fatigue. This requires continuous core body temperature monitoring and individual temperature pattern analysis.

Rheumatism and Systemic Lupus

Core-body temperature could conceivably be used as a biomarker in rheumatic diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). New studies are required to gain more insight into the clinical course of SLE.

Relapses are currently detected too late for medical intervention. It is safe to assume that core body temperature indicates an atypical and specific clinical course before or during a relapse. This particular disease seems to be connected to the menstrual cycle (Sekigawa 2010), warranting special interest in measuring core body temperature as it reflects all the endocrinological processes in the body. Specifically, deterioration in systemic lupus erythematosus symptoms has been observed in the premenstrual phase, early pregnancy and the postpartum period (Sekigawa 2010 and Yell 2006). Several studies have shown oestrogen to increase the extent and severity of systemic lupus erythematosus in women and experimental animals (Khan 2016). This phenomenon strongly suggests a close relationship between increased oestrogen levels and relapses (Sekigawa 2010).

Body-core temperature changes recorded in lupus patients may indicate an immunological reaction; if so, this would make a substantial contribution to further research in systemic lupus erythematosus and point the way to new research approaches. Body core temperature should be used as a biomarker especially in early diagnosis of relapses in autoimmune disease, as this would allow individualized diagnosis and treatment matched for each patient.