Public Release: 

Sepsis kills over 6,000,000 children in developing world: App-device could help save them

A new app-device leverages mobile phones and tablets to create pulse oximeters that quickly and accurately measure 2 key signs of sepsis

LionsGate Technologies (LGTmedical)

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IMAGE: Dr. Mark Ansermino is a pediatric anesthesiologist at BC Children's Hospital. view more

Credit: Photo supplied by LGTmedical

VANCOUVER, BC, Canada - September 11, 2014 - Sepsis is common and often deadly, reports the Global Sepsis Alliance, the organization behind the upcoming World Sepsis Day on Saturday, September 13th:

"Often misunderstood as "blood poisoning", sepsis is one of the leading causes of death around the world today. Sepsis arises when the body's response to an infection damages its own tissues and organs. It can lead to shock, multiple organ failure, and death, especially if it is not recognized early and treated promptly. Between one-third and one-half of all sepsis patients die. In developing countries, sepsis accounts for 60-80% of all deaths. It kills more than 6 million infants and young children, and 100,000 new mothers every year. Every few seconds, someone in the world dies of sepsis." - http://www.world-sepsis-day.org

"Two signs that someone might have sepsis are if they have a high pulse rate as well as arterial hypoxemia or blood oxygen deficiency. These are also signs of other severe infections, such as pneumonia which is the leading cause of death in children under the age of five in the developing world," said Dr. Mark Ansermino, a pediatric anesthesiologist at BC Children's Hospital and Chief Medical Officer for LionsGate Technologies (LGTmedical). "Both of these vital signs - pulse rate and blood oxygen level - can be quickly and easily measured with a non-invasive fingertip pulse oximeter."

Saving lives in the developing world is why Dr. Ansermino and his colleagues at the University of British Columbia (UBC) Electrical and Computer Engineering in Medicine research group developed the Phone Oximeter™ pulse oximeter, a sensor powered by a smartphone, in 2010.

LGTmedical commercialized the innovation as the Kenek Edge™ pulse oximeter. It was launched into the US recreational market in June 2014 to generate revenue that will support distribution and development of the urgently needed medical device in the developing world.

"Our goal is to provide ultra-low cost vital signs monitoring to everyone, everywhere," said Tom Walker, President and CEO of LGTmedical. "Our universal interface, Kenek Core™, enables standard sensors to easily connect to mobile devices through the audio port. This means the device is driven entirely by the app software in the smartphone or tablet. Because there are no batteries, processors, network connection, or wireless configuration, it can be used anywhere - in remote villages or in low-resource communities around the world."

Pulse oximetry is LGTmedical's initial application to be commercialized because it could have the biggest impact on saving lives in the developing world, specifically people with sepsis, children with pneumonia, and women with preeclampsia.

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About LionsGate Technologies Inc. (LGTmedical)

LGTmedical is a spin-off company of the University of British Columbia (UBC), the Child & Family Research Institute, and BC Children's Hospital in Vancouver, BC, Canada. It has leveraged the synergies of award-winning interdisciplinary research, global foundations, and business expertise to establish the innovative core technologies, infrastructure, and partnerships and become a leading mHealth company. LGTmedical is focused on product and channel development to achieve the most scalable and clinically impactful global mobile health solutions. The company is ISO 13485:2003 certified.

Phone Oximeter, Kenek, Kenek Edge, and Kenek Core are trademarks of LionsGate Technologies Inc.

Kenek Edge is a mobile application (app) and sensor device that can help people gain access to useful information when and where they need it. The information is for sports and recreational use only. Kenek Edge is not a medical device.

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