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Pasadena-Based Company Completes First-Stage Human Trials of Groundbreaking New Disease-Detection Wearables

Published on Sunday, January 16, 2022 | 1:00 am
Photo courtesy Rockley Photonics website

Rockley Photonics, a photonics-based health monitoring and communications solutions company in Pasadena, has completed the first stages of preliminary human studies that examine the measurement of core body temperature using the company’s non-invasive biomarker sensing platform.

In these studies, researchers have shown that a photonics-based sensor installed in a wearable device – such as a smartwatch or wristband – can produce temperature measurements that more closely relate with reference sensors than do auxiliary sensors like oral, ear, and infrared thermometers.

By being able to detect core body temperature from a smartwatch or wristband, Rockley’s sensing platform can provide real-time insights about a variety of health conditions and detect the state of disease early.

Core body temperature influences the body’s regular function and can affect one’s very survival, a Rockley Photonics statement said.

“As consumers and practitioners are becoming increasingly aware of the importance of monitoring the conditions that contribute to good health and help identify possible diseases, the ability to monitor key biomarkers like core body temperature on a continuous basis will become extremely important,” Dr. David Klonoff, clinical professor of medicine at the University of California in San Francisco, said. “By miniaturizing the ability to monitor core body temperature into a tiny form factor, Rockley has effectively paved the way for a ‘mobile lab’ that people can wear on their wrist.”

Klonoff said this development will be a game-changer for remote patient monitoring and should help healthcare providers offer better care for their patients.

Today’s common measurement tools and thermometers are designed for convenience, and cannot readily measure the temperature inside the body. Unlike them, Rockley’s wearable sensors probe beneath the surface of the skin in a non-invasive manner to measure core body temperature.

Dr. Andrew Rickman, chief executive officer and founder of Rockley Photonics, said the initial results from the human studies clearly show how effective the company’s wearable sensing platform can determine core body temperature.

“Core body temperature is just one of several biomarker measurements that our platform will support,” Rickman said. “We believe our ongoing human studies will help us optimize algorithms and refine performance across a broad range of biomarkers, and we look forward to sharing further positive results in the future. As we learn more about each biomarker, we expect that the cloud-based analytics and AI capabilities of our platform can help develop a more holistic assessment of a person’s health and well-being.”

Rockley’s in-house core body temperature studies have been approved by the WIRB – Copernicus Group Institutional Review Board and represent the first in a series of studies designed to evaluate and refine the performance of Rockley’s biomarker sensing platform.

Soon, the platform will also measure blood pressure, body hydration, alcohol, lactate, and glucose trends, the company indicated.

To learn more about Rockley Photonics, visit

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