KT Corporation, one of South Korea’s biggest telecommunications firms, has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Catholic Medical Center of the Catholic University of Korea to jointly develop digital treatment devices.

WHAT IT’S ABOUT

Under the agreement, the companies will jointly cooperate to develop a platform to create digital therapeutics (DTx) devices and build prototypes. They will also hold an idea contest for digital treatment devices.

On its end, KT Corp. said it plans to combine AI, big data, and cloud technologies with DTx. Aside from that, it will support local and international marketing efforts around digital treatment devices. On the other hand, the CMC will provide the research personnel and clinical infrastructure and will also support the medical and academic exchanges. 

MARKET SNAPSHOT

In June, KT Corp. also entered into an agreement with US-based NeuroSigma to develop and market electronic therapies for neurological and neuropsychological disorders, like ADHD, depression and epilepsy. The latter created the first US FDA-approved non-drug therapy device for treating pediatric ADHD, Monarch eTNS, which uses non-invasive external trigeminal nerve stimulation.

In the DTx realm, Japanese companies are leading the pack in the Asia-Pacific. Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma Co. and BehaVR, an American mental health firm, have signed deals to create and sell prescription DTx for major mental health disorders. Under these agreements, Sumitomo will fund the development of three new virtual reality-based therapies for social anxiety disorder, generalised anxiety disorder and major depressive disorder (MDD). Together, they will seek US FDA approvals for the pipeline devices. 

In early 2021, Otsuka Pharmaceutical and Click Therapeutics in the US conducted a fully remote clinical trial to measure a DTx intervention’s effectiveness in reducing symptoms of depression among adults with MDD. 

According to Grand View Research, the global digital therapeutics market is expected to hit $19.1 billion in value by 2028, growing at a 23.1% CAGR from last year.

ON THE RECORD

“In cooperation with the CMC, we will create various references in the field of digital treatment devices, such as addiction improvement, rehabilitation, and chronic disease management”, said Jae-Ho Song, VP for AI/DX convergence business division at KT Corp. 

“The digital treatment device market is expected to expand further and data-based customized treatment is expected,” Kim Dae-jin, president of the Information Convergence Promotion Centre at CMC, also commented.

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By seohan