NIH delves further into mHealth with inventions available for licensing

A mobile app that tracks and predicts a user's psychological status to provide automated healthcare intervention is one of eight U.S. government inventions available for licensing.

Developed by National Institutes of Health (NIH) researchers, the platform uses a smartphone to monitor a patient's location and initiates questions regarding health and psychological status. It then collects that data with geospatial risk maps to analyzes potential risk and future psychological state of mind.

The goal is to be able to alert a user to when they are at risk of a negative incident that could trigger an unhealthy result. One example is a negative event that may serve as a trigger to resume drug use or drinking by a recovering addict, according to information regarding the invention posted at the Federal Register.

The list of inventions also includes a speedy diagnostic process tool for a range of diseases and a system for generating cells to serve as a cancer's metastasis ability.

The NIH technologies for licensing reflect increasing governmental focus on developing mHealth tools.

At the end of August, the Department of Defense announced a $75 million effort to spur flexible hybrid electronics development and potential innovations that could include wearable devices to improve medical health monitoring technologies and personal fitness devices.

A study earlier this month revealed that mHealth tools can help military veterans grappling with critical and life-changing medical challenges--from physical injuries to mental health conditions.

The NIH mHealth app available for licensing is described as being in a prototype stage and was developed by National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) researchers Kenzie L. Preston, David H. Epstein, Matthew Tyburski, and Massoud Vahabzadeh.

For more information:
- here's the NIH innovations list