29 May 2012

Press Release: Advancing safe space flight for everyone, Vital Space and Astronauts4Hire test innovative Biometric Monitoring Platform in Zero Gravity


May 29, 2012

Advancing safe space flight for everyone, Vital Space and Astronauts4Hire test innovative Biometric Monitoring Platform in Zero Gravity

Houston, Texas – Vital Space and Astronauts4Hire completed a 4-day flight research campaign consisting of 160 microgravity parabolas to validate ViSi Mobile, a cutting-edge FDA-approved vital sign monitoring system. Astronauts4Hire flight members Jason Reimuller and Brian Shiro provided operational expertise and served as subjects in the study, which aims to leverage emerging innovations in mobile health technology for spaceflight applications.

"Commercial spaceflight participants present a variety of opportunities for new biomedical research," said the project Principal Investigator Dr. Ravi Komatireddy, a KL2 clinician scholar in wireless medicine at the Scripps Translational Science Institute trained in Internal Medicine. "This flight campaign lays the groundwork for future experiments that aim to create new risk models, establish training or certification standards, link with existing medical records, and complement existing medical research and evaluation in space using innovative sensor technology."

Paddy Barrett, Jason Reimuller, and Justin Buckingham operating the
ViSi Mobile in zero gravity. Image Credit: NASA
The team tested the innovative ViSi MobileTM System from Sotera Wireless, Inc. This platform leverages recent advances in wireless medical technology to monitor critical, physiological metrics such as blood pressure, arterial hemoglobin oxygen saturation, heart rate, respiratory rate, skin temperature, and multi-lead electrocardiogram.

The experiment involved a comprehensive hardware test to examine basic device functionality and usability. Test subjects performed a variety of activities to simulate normal and emergency medical use cases expected in the space environment. Vital Space partner MEDgle will use sophisticated analytics to analyze data.

"SpaceX's recent successful launch and docking with the International Space Station harkens to the approaching age of commercial spaceflight," remarked A4H President Brian Shiro. "We are excited to contribute to the Vital Space effort, which has the potential to increase health and safety for a wider demographic of space flyers and expand access to the space frontier."

"Sotera's mission is to keep people safe by detecting early signs of potential deterioration in virtually any setting," said Dr. Gunnar Trommer, VP Marketing for Sotera Wireless. "Since we are a high-technology company, why would that be limited to healthcare facilities or even the ground? If one wants to explore the limits of a product, it needs to be challenged under extreme conditions. If it works in zero-gravity, you know that it will work under normal conditions too."

NASA’s Flight Opportunities Program under the Space Technology Program funded the flight campaign, which was facilitated by NASA’s Reduced Gravity Office in Ellington Field, Texas.

About Astronauts4Hire:
Astronauts for Hire, Inc. (A4H) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation whose objectives are to provide opportunities for students and professionals to develop and refine the skills necessary to become commercial astronauts and to assist these qualified candidates with networking opportunities in the space research community. A4H's commercial astronaut candidates are accomplished scientists and engineers who can support a wide variety of payloads. They are available today for contract and consulting work with researchers to design and conduct experiments on microgravity, suborbital, and orbital missions. For more information, please visit www.Astronauts4Hire.org or contact Public Relations Officer Ben Corbin at media[at]astronauts4hire.org or at (850) 685-2218.

About Vital Space:
Vital Space aims to apply state of the art mobile health technology, analytics, and multidisciplinary clinical expertise to capture human performance during aerospace training and flight. The physiologic data captured will be used to validate health technology and tools to visualize and enrich the flight experience. This and other ongoing research will assist in the creation of medical risk models for commercial spaceflight. Additionally, information regarding human performance and medical device technology will be explored for potential utility in clinical medicine and research. The upcoming parabolic flight will serve as the first opportunity to test an innovative medical device on commercial spaceflight candidates. Vital Space is working in cooperation with the Silicon Valley Space Center. For more information, contact Ravi Komatireddy at ravi[at]vitalspace.us or Sean Casey at sean.casey[at]siliconvalleyspacecenter.org.

About Scripps Translational Science Institute:
Part of San Diego-based Scripps Health, the Scripps Translational Science Institute (STSI) is a unique community collaboration that initiates research that moves basic science from the lab to the patient bedside. STSI is supported by the NIH flagship program, Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA). Collaborators in the STSI consortium include Scripps Health, Scripps Research Institute, Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Genomics Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation, J. Craig Venter Institute, Salk Institute for Biological Studies, San Diego State University, San Diego Supercomputer Center, and The Neurosciences Institute. For more information, please visit www.stsiweb.org.

About Sotera Wireless:
Sotera Wireless, Inc. is a San Diego based medical device company dedicated to development, marketing and sale of a new generation of comprehensive vital signs monitoring. Sotera is the ancient Greek term for savior: Sotera’s mission is to improve patient safety by empowering clinicians to detect signs of deterioration in virtually any care setting and enable early intervention and rapid response, without limiting the patient’s freedom of movement. The company’s first product, the ViSi MobileTM System is currently FDA cleared and has received CE mark for stand-alone monitoring of ECG, Heart rate/Pulse rate, SpO2, Respiratory rate, Non-invasive blood pressure (NIBP) and Skin Temperature. Other functions including Sotera’s patented continuous NIBP, Posture/Activity and wireless connectivity are in final stages of development and are not yet cleared. More information on this product and Sotera Wireless can be obtained at www.soterawireless.com or by sending an email to info[at]soterawireless.com.

About Medgle:
MEDgle is a leading, next-generation health analytics platform that empowers clinicians and patients to make educated, personalized health care decisions. MEDgle uses a vast, curated database of health knowledge to turn a patient’s acute and chronic health information into relevant health indicators and action items for both the patient and clinician. Applying proprietary, predictive algorithms to health data allows MEDgle to streamline the clinical decision making process thereby increasing efficiency and reducing cost. MEDgle is actively working with numerous top-tier health providers to continue to lead the data-driven health ecosystem. For more information, please visit www.medgle.com or contact Ash Damle at as[at]medgle.com.

About NASA Flight Opportunities Program:
The NASA Flight Opportunities Program intends to mature to flight readiness status crosscutting technologies that advance multiple future space missions. It provides frequent flight opportunities to demonstrate and develop technology payloads on both parabolic aircraft and suborbital reusable launch vehicles for reduced gravity or near-space flights. Flight Opportunities is part of the Space Technology Program and is managed at NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center in Edwards, CA. NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, CA manages the payload activities for the program. For more information, please visit www.flightopportunities.nasa.gov. The October 2011 NASA press release announcing the Vital Space flight opportunity is available at http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2011/oct/HQ_11-331_CCC_Payload.txt.

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