The XPRIZE Foundation has announced Final Frontier Medical Devices and the Dynamical Biomarkers Group as the winner and runner-up in the Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE initiative, a $10 million global competition designed to stimulate innovation and the integration of precision diagnostic technologies, helping consumers make their own reliable health diagnoses anywhere, anytime.
During the competition, which was inspired by the medical "Tricorder" device featured in the original Star Trek television series, Pennsylvania-based Final Frontier — winner of the $2.5 million Qualcomm Foundation-sponsored top prize — developed an affordable device that can diagnose and interpret a defined set of thirteen health conditions to various degrees while continuously monitoring five vital health metrics. Its "DxtER" (pronounced "Dexter"), an artificial intelligence-based engine that learns to diagnose medical conditions, includes a group of non-invasive sensors that are designed to collect data on vital signs, body chemistry, and biological functions, which are then synthesized to make a quick and accurate diagnosis. The protoype developed by Dynamical Biomarkers, a team of Taiwanese and U.S.-based physicians, scientists, and engineers, pairs diagnostic algorithms with analytical methodology in a user-friendly device that is controlled with a smartphone.
In addition, X PRIZE announced a post-competition initiative that includes further testing of and research on Tricorder-like devices; $3.8 million from the Qualcomm Foundation for further promotion of the digital health ecosystem; an additional $1.6 million from the Roddenberry Foundation toward the adaptation of the winning devices for use in hospitals and communities in the developing world; and a collaboration to provide the devices for use in a hospital in Mozambique.
"It is very exciting that our vision of mobile, personalized patient-centric health care is getting closer to becoming a reality thanks to the great work of the Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE teams," said Paul E. Jacobs, executive chair of Qualcomm, Inc. "Creating technology breakthroughs in an industry as complex as health care is quite a milestone, and what these teams accomplished is a great stepping stone to making mobile health care a viable option across the world."