Propeller links up with Aptar Pharma to develop connected metered dose inhaler


The device is currently available for licensing and should enter clinical studies later this year

Propeller Health, a developer of sensor and mobile phone systems to manage asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) has formed a partnership with drug delivery systems specialist Aptar Pharma to jointly develop what the company believes will be the world's first integrated cMDI, with an integrated sensor and a novel electronic dose counter. The device is currently available for licensing and is expected to enter clinical studies later this year.

'Patients and doctors deserve better-designed inhalers that are easier to use and help them successfully treat their chronic respiratory disease,' said David Van Sickle, CEO of Propeller. 'We are excited to work with Aptar to bring important digital innovation to respiratory drug delivery.'

Pressurised MDIs are the most common type of inhaler device on the market today, with more than 600 million units manufactured globally. They deliver aerosolised medications such as bronchodilators, corticosteroids and combinations that are used daily by patients with chronic respiratory diseases such as asthma or COPD.

The Propeller-Aptar partnership will create the first connected inhaler that will combine Aptar MDI components and sensor technology with Propeller electronics directly into the inhaler housing, allowing for accurate and reliable monitoring of when each patient uses their inhaled medication. Information about the use of medications delivered by the cMDI will be put to work as part of the Propeller digital system for patients and providers.

Using existing apps, emails, text messages and other feedback, patients will be able to learn more about their disease, how to manage it better, and how to stay on track with their prescribed dosing instructions, the company says. In addition, doctors can identify individuals who need more help controlling symptoms, and care managers can efficiently focus on higher risk patients who need more personalised attention.

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Propeller says its platform is 510(k) cleared and compatible with a majority of MDIs on the market today.