Google acquires mHealth monitoring startup Senosis Health

Senosis Health app

Google has acquired Seattle, WA-based Senosis Health, an mHealth monitoring startup that makes apps which measure, diagnose, and manage diseases.

Co-founded by Prof. Shwetak Patel at the University of Washington’s (UbiComp) research lab, Senosis’ apps collect health metrics to diagnose pulmonary function, hemoglobin counts and other critical health information.

One of the company’s apps, SpiroSmart, measures lung function by having the patient blow into a phone’s microphone. As such, it replaces a dedicated spirometer for diagnosing and managing asthma, cystic fibrosis and other pulmonary diseases.

Another app, SpiroCall, turns any phone — not necessarily a smartphone — into a spirometer through a toll-free calling service that is useful in low-resource settings.

Also, there’s Billicam, a screening tool for detecting newborn jaundice that uses the built-in camera and flash to measure the amount of bilirubin in the blood by examining wavelengths of light absorbed by the skin.

In a similar fashion, HemaApp measures hemoglobin in the blood using a smartphone’s camera and delivers results and alleviates concerns about sample contamination or infection.

Finally, the OsteoApp is made to measure bone strength, based on the vibrations that pass through the user’s arm when the elbow is tapped.

All of these apps were reportedly going through the FDA’s clearance process for clinical testing earlier this year.

We have no idea how much Google paid for these apps, but we do know the Senosis Health team will form the backbone of Google’s digital health team in Seattle.