w/ Adam Marblestone, Harvard Medical School (2013)

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We are creating an open wearable bio-sensor platform to enable the discovery of new healthcare insights: a pair of glasses with embedded sensors for continuous long-term monitoring of physiological signals. Ultimately, we would like to integrate this open-source, plug-and-play system with the Personal Genome Project and Quantified Self Movement. When fully developed, an open bio-glasses platform would enable the creation of datasets that allow meaningful correlation between genotype, phenotype and environment/behavior.

The entire system (including PCBs, glasses frames, programming environment) is constructed from open digital specifications solely using tools available in most Fab Labs, plus certain commercially available open-source boards. In the future, kits or fully assembled devices may also be distributed.

We believe that this project will help individuals to test hypotheses about their health and habits. One of the authors of this project, for example, suffers from sleep apnea, a condition where one temporarily stops breathing during sleep. While there are known environmental factors (mainly being overweight), inheritance patterns are also common, and yet no genetic markers have been found. Here our approach could help in two ways: it could aid in the discovery of such genetic variants from within a wide sample population and also allow Charles to pinpoint the daily activities and foods that impact his sleep.

© Charles Fracchia