Early Warning Hearing Loss Detection Technology (Wearable Europe 2020)

Dr Nigel Whittle, Head of Medical & Healthcare
United Kingdom

Presentation Summary

Noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) results from exposure to loud sound, either a single intense impulse or continuous exposure over a period of time, which can seriously damage sensitive structures in the inner ear.
No existing technology is currently available to enable the facile detection of such damage before the person develops overt symptoms, such as the characteristic buzzing in the ears that indicates tinnitus.
The company will present its latest developments including operational studies of the technology in the 'real-world' environments, and advanced algorithms which will allow audiometric testing during routine leisure use of music players.

Speaker Biography (Nigel Whittle)

Nigel is the Head of Medical & Healthcare at Plextek, working with a wide range of clients to provide expertise in the development and commercialisation of cutting-edge technology.
With over 20 years of experience in the medical and pharmaceutical sector, Nigel has pioneered innovative drug and medical device technologies for companies such as MedImmune, Celltech, Cantab Pharmaceuticals and Genentech.
Nigel completed a PhD in ground-breaking cancer research at Imperial College, before joining Celltech to lead development of the company's first marketed therapy, targeted at sepsis. With Cantab Pharmaceuticals he led development of a range of immunological modulators, taking treatments into clinical trials. After completing an MBA at Cambridge University Nigel, joined a private equity firm to build start-up companies from university IP, leading to the establishment and flotation of Proximagen Neurosciences. More recently he worked with UK Trade & Investment in a hugely successful drive to bring investment from overseas pharmaceutical companies into the UK. In recent years he has run his own consultancy, Asia Pacific Life Sciences focused on funding and development of medical technologies, working with some of the leading technology consultancies, including PA Consulting and Sagentia.

Company Profile (Plextek Ltd)

Plextek is a specialist design and development company with expertise in electronic engineering, particularly around sensing, data collection & communications. We work with global clients to provide unique solutions to their most difficult technology challenges, in key market sectors including Medical Technology. We have successfully completed projects in a wide range of healthcare-related areas, from non-invasive glucose monitoring, to non-contact technology for measuring lung function, to sense & avoid radar systems for delivery of medical supplies by drone. As an ISO13485-certified company we have a deep understanding of the challenges faced by companies developing innovative medical devices.
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