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Can you feel my heartbeat?

Startup KAIST Pangyo Center STARTUP Week had an opening by Sky Labs, startup that discovered ring-type wearable device (CART) for atrial fibrillation diagnosis. During the two days we spent with Sky Labs, we had a chance to learn about their vision and work in depth.


About Sky Labs(Startup, Past and Present) & CART Byung Hwan Lee, CEO


Atrial Fibrillation(AF) describes a condition when the heart beats abnormally fast. One out of every 4 person in their 40s or older suffers from this chronic condition. This is a dangerous condition as it can lead to stroke. Studies show that patients with atrial fibrillation are five times more likely to develop brain disorders than those with out atrial fibrillation.


However, atrial fibrillation is difficult to diagnose. Holter monitoring method is most widely used, but it lacks accuracy and doesn’t allow continuous observation. This was the point that Sky Labs addressed and invented miniature cardio tracker (CART) for accurate diagnosis and personalized care.

Sky Labs’ CART allows continuous monitoring and customized care simply by wearing the device on patient’s finger. The device daily self-diagnosis easy, and the data can be used to prevent complications from atrial fibrillation and provides insight for healthcare professionals.

Clinical trials and research are still ongoing. Through their joint research work with Seoul National University Hospital clinical tests shows that the diagnosis accuracy is 97% and higher than other diagnostic methods.

SkyLabs joined SparkLab IOT Accelerator as one of its first members, and was selected to participate in Grants4Apps Korea program hosted by Bayer and KOTRA. They are continuing their partnership with Bayer. They also demoed at SLUSH in 2017, and continuing to grow as a global leader.


Healthcare Business & Sky Labs in Europe-Jin Kyum Hong PD


In addition to introduction about Sky Labs, we were also able to learn about European healthcare trends. There are four leading chronic diseases in the world, and they are cardiovascular disease, respiratory disease, diabetes and cancer(WTO). As a response, European countries are pursuing Remote Patient Monitoring(RPM) as the next solution, and these players include Telecare of NHS in the UK and Vitaphone in Germany. However, RPM has its limitations as it doesn’t provide continuous monitoring and lacks accuracy.

Wearable devices are emerging in the healthcare market, including mobile healthcare, and examples include Jenny Core, Temptrack, Cardia Band, Koala Life. Global pharmaceutical companies are actively investing in this market and developing new relevant drugs.

Skylabs is targeting the European healthcare market and growing as a global healthcare company. Healthcare business is largely divided into B2C / B2B / B2G sectors. B2C describes hospitals as customrs, and B2B companies describe pharmaceutical companies like Bayer. B2G takes a systematic approach through government contracts. Northern European countries like Finland and Sweden are considered promising markets, as they are open to investing funds into healthcare technologies. The UK is building innovative partnerships with market access to NHS.


Atrial Fibrillation Detection Technology & Clinical Trials in Sky Labs- Sung-Mi Cho PD


ECG (Electrocardiogram) is mostly commonly used device for cardiovascular diseases. It’s easy to use, but has the disadvantage of inaccuracy and bulky. Sky Labs’ CART uses PPG (Photoplelethysmography) that involves Lighy Emitting Diode (LED) and Photodiode (PD) technologies. These technologies are used with smartphones or smartwatches. Sky Labs’ CART uses PPG to receive atrial fibrillation and atrial flutter information and control noise. In noise reduction, machine learning filtering mechanism is used to check the vital signal. This leads to an accuracy level higher than conventional medical devices such as smart bands.

SkyLabs is conducting clinical trials with patients with atrial fibrillation, and developing atrial fibrillation detection algorithm with the clinical data. Their aim is to develop technologies that can help patients suffering from heart conditions and prevent brain diseases.

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