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Google Forays into Bioelectronics along with GSK

Google is known for its interest in life sciences. While Google’s venture capital arm invested in genetic testing and analysis company 23andMe, it also ran its own Google Life Sciences division.  Verily formerly known as Google Life Sciences has partnered with GlaxoSmithKline to form Galvani Bioelectronics.

Galvani-frogs-legs-electricity

Electrodes touch a frog, and the legs twitch into the upward position

Galvani Bioelectronics, a joint venture between the Internet and Drug giants will be working on research and development of implantable bioelectronics devices. These devices, with potential uses in the treatment and rehabilitation of patients suffering from arthritis, diabetes and asthma will use electrical signals to manipulate nerve impulses. The new company derives its name from Luigi Aloisio Galvani, an Italian scientist who was the first person to explore bioelectricity. His experiments with electrodes and frog legs are well documented.

“Many of the processes of the human body are controlled by electrical signals firing between the nervous system and the body’s organs, which may become distorted in many chronic diseases. Bioelectronic medicine’s vision is to employ the latest advances in biology and technology to interpret this electrical conversation and to correct the irregular patterns found in disease states, using miniaturized devices attached to individual nerves. If successful, this approach offers the potential for a new therapeutic modality alongside traditional medicines and vaccines,”

-states GSK’s Moncef Slaoui – Chairman of Global Vaccines, who also established GSK’s investment arm for bioelectronics.

The new company Galvani Bioelectronics will have its bases in GSK UK’s R&D center and Verily’s San Francisco center.

Ref: GSK