MannKind, One Drop to study Afrezza-app combo in Type 2 diabetes

MannKind and One Drop are recruiting for a trial that will study the effectiveness of using their products together. (One Drop)

MannKind and One Drop teamed up in May to “explore collaborations” around the former’s inhaled insulin, Afrezza, and the latter’s digital diabetes care platform. Now, the duo is launching a study to gauge whether pairing their offerings will improve diabetes management.

Patients with Type 2 diabetes will be randomized to one of two treatment arms, the companies said in a statement. One arm will use One Drop’s mobile app alone, while the other will take the inhaled mealtime insulin, Afrezza, in addition to using the One Drop app.

Patients use the One Drop Chrome blood glucose meter, which transmits glucose data to the app via Bluetooth. There, patients may view historical glucose data, as well as analysis showing the relationships between behaviors and health outcomes.

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One Drop’s management platform is available by tiered subscription; patients in this trial will use the “Premium” version. As part of the package, patients receive unlimited test strips and have access to coaching from certified diabetes experts.

"Diabetes technology is evolving in a very exciting way," said OneDrop CEO Jeff Dachis in the statement. "But not surprisingly for the vast majority of people with diabetes worldwide, expensive sensors, automated insulin delivery solutions, or call center approaches to care can create barriers and challenges to effective disease management.”

“[We] are excited to evaluate whether a completely integrated digital diabetes therapeutics platform—encompassing evidence-based interventions, ADA-recognized diabetes education and coaching, wireless blood glucose tracking, user-centered design, robust data science, and an innovative pharmaceutical product like MannKind's Afrezza—can deliver improved health outcomes at a fraction of the cost of current standards of care,” Dachis said.

Mannkind has been struggling with Afrezza, despite the appeal of inhaling insulin rather than injecting it. Sanofi bailed on its marketing partnership with Mannkind early last year, saying that the drug "never met even modest expectations, and we do not project Afrezza reaching even the lowest patient levels anticipated.” Mannkind’s latest push is sponsoring “Reversed,” a diabetes-focused reality series that will follow five people with Type 2 diabetes.