Insulet unveils pediatric ‘artificial pancreas’ data

Insulet's "artificial pancreas" is based on its OmniPod system, which delivers insulin from a "pod" worn on the body rather than through a catheter. (Insulet)

Insulet presented new data from the feasibility study of its hybrid closed-loop glucose control system, showing the device performed as well in children and adolescents as it does in adults.

The OmniPod Horizon Automated Glucose Control System is based on the company’s OmniPod Insulin Management System, which delivers insulin from a “pod,” rather than through a catheter. A patient fills the pod with insulin, sticks it to his or her body and uses a handheld device to request bolus insulin when required.

The Horizon system goes a step further: It uses an algorithm to continuously calculate and deliver the appropriate dose of insulin. The setup Insulet is testing includes a modified version of its OmniPod system, its personalized model predictive control algorithm and a Dexcom continuous glucose sensor.

The 36-hour study involved 34 adults, 12 adolescents and 12 pediatric patients with Type 1 diabetes. Insulet revealed results for the adult group in February, showing that patients stayed in their target blood glucose control range 69% of the time and maintained their target glucose level 90% of the time at night.

RELATED: Medtronic's 'artificial pancreas' eases overnight burden of managing diabetes

Insulet presented the new data at the International Conference on Advanced Technologies & Treatments for Diabetes. It showed that adolescent and pediatric patients spent more than 70% of time in their target glucose range, while they maintained their target range at least 85% of the time overnight.

“These initial results indicate that the algorithm performance can address the unique challenges faced by pediatric populations with high insulin sensitivity and adolescents who tend to be insulin resistant,” the company said in a statement.

Several players are working on “artificial pancreas” devices, but Medtronic is the only company so far to score FDA approval. The devicemaker launched its MiniMed 670G hybrid closed-loop system this month.