Philips and Immunetrics to combat infectious diseases in critical care

4 February 2009

Royal Philips Electronics (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHI) and Immunetrics Inc. have entered into a joint development agreement to explore new approaches to the problem of infectious disease in critical care. Philips currently owns a 29% stake in Immunetrics, a biosimulation company based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA.

The partnership unites Philips’ strength in patient monitoring and the design and implementation of applications to help clinicians make more informed care decisions, and Immunetrics’ strengths in the dynamic modeling and simulation of complex biological systems.

Under the joint development agreement, Philips Research and Immunetrics will study the combination of advanced bioinformatics and computer modeling to identify opportunities to reduce the incidence and improve the management of systemic infection, a major complicating factor among many critically ill patients.

Critical care is a branch of medicine that involves the specialized treatment of patients with acute, life-threatening illness or injury. It is an area of persistent unmet need and significant consumption of healthcare resources. For example, critical care expense in the USA represents the equivalent of nearly one percent of its gross domestic product.

Sepsis, a life-threatening, systemic inflammatory response to infection, is an example of a key medical challenge for which Philips Research and Immunetrics seek to develop new mechanisms for early and effective intervention. In the USA and Europe sepsis afflicts more than two million people each year and incidence of the condition is growing. Despite the best currently available treatment, approximately one in every three patients with severe sepsis will die.

“The management of the condition of critical care patients involves the monitoring and control of a multitude of parameters, a field in which Philips has a leading position. Yet, we see patient outcomes that are frequently unpredictable and sub-optimal,” said Henk van Houten, senior vice president of Philips Research and head of its Healthcare Research program.

“Through our collaboration with Immunetrics, a leader in computational modeling of pathophysiology and treatment, we will broaden our portfolio of research approaches directed to assessing infection risk and optimizing intervention, with the goal of improving the quality of care and reducing the mortality of critically ill patients.”

“Immunetrics is excited to team with Philips Research and its significant technology resources with the goal of advancing patient care across the acute care setting,” said Steven Chang, president and CEO of Pittsburgh-based Immunetrics. “This collaboration recognizes the potential of bioinformatics and computational modeling in providing breakthrough solutions to enable clinicians to improve the assessment, care and outcomes of patients.”

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