Feeds

Philips pops out the drug packing iPill

Take one of these computers with a glass of water

Application security programs and practises

An "intelligent pill" with a microprocessor, battery, wireless radio, pump and a drug reservoir to release medication in a specific area in the body was announced yesterday by Dutch electronics firm Philips.

The multivitamin-sized iPill, to be swallowed with a sip of water, measures acidity or temperature with a sensor to determine its location, and can then release drugs where they are needed.

The pill will be introduced at the annual meeting of the American Association of Pharmaceutical Scientists (AAPS) in Atlanta this month and Philips is already talking to drug makers about using it to treat colon cancer and bowel inflammation.

Of course, capsules containing miniature cameras are already on the market. In 2004, your author saw a pill-size gastro-cam developed by Olympus during a show in Tokyo. While travelling through the digestive tract, the pill made 2 shots per second and images were sent wirelessly to a video monitor.

However, it wasn't exactly easy to steer the pill through the intestine, even with with huge magnets, and it still hasn't replaced conventional endoscopes which require a tube to be inserted.

Earlier this year another cam pill, developed by the Japanese RF System Lab, has entered clinical trials in the US. This pill requires 50 milliwatts to run its camera and lights, so patients need to wear a vest which contains a coil that continuously transmits power.

Philips says camera pills presently lack the ability to release drugs.

The company says the iPill is ready for mass production. The pill could cost as much as $1000 when it will be introduced. Eventually, though, the price could come down to about $10. ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
Just TWO climate committee MPs contradict IPCC: The two with SCIENCE degrees
'Greenhouse effect is real, but as for the rest of it ...'
BEST BATTERY EVER: All lithium, all the time, plus a dash of carbon nano-stuff
We have found the Holy Grail (of batteries) - boffins
Asteroid's DINO KILLING SPREE just bad luck – boffins
Sauricide WASN'T inevitable, reckon scientists
Flamewars in SPAAACE: cooler fires hint at energy efficiency
Experiment aboard ISS shows we should all chill out for cleaner engines
The Sun took a day off last week and made NO sunspots
Someone needs to get that lazy star cooking again before things get cold around here
Boffins discuss AI space program at hush-hush IARPA confab
IBM, MIT, plenty of others invited to fill Uncle Sam's spy toolchest, but where's Google?
Famous 'Dish' radio telescope to be emptied in budget crisis: CSIRO
Radio astronomy suffering to protect Square Kilometre Array
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.