Digital biomarkers will impact healthcare within the next year and are key to the future of medicine, finds Lux Research
BOSTON, MA, DECEMBER 3, 2020 – In its newest report, “The Lux Take on the Future of Digital Biomarkers,” Lux Research, a leading provider of tech-enabled research and advisory services, assesses digital biomarkers on five key factors to gauge their market readiness in the coming year. While a lot of hype has surrounded digital biomarkers, in many cases, it is justified, as digital biomarkers hold the promise of underpinning both healthcare diagnostics and therapeutics.
Traditional biomarkers are data points that allow for clinical decision-making around diagnosis and treatment plans. While traditional biomarkers are identified from anatomical or biochemical data, digital biomarkers differ in that they are identified from patterns found in noninvasively collected digital data – like speech, step counts, or sleep. The underlying algorithms that identify these patterns are integrated into existing smartphones and wearables. The three defining factors of digital biomarkers are that they are continuous, are noninvasive, and leverage the remote collection of data, all of which allow physicians to get a more holistic picture of a patient.
Lead report author and Lux Research Analyst Danielle Bradnan says, “Research is regularly uncovering new use cases for digital biomarkers, such as early detection of the flu and optimizing drug selection for mental health treatment. Specific integration into clinically validated products is likely to follow a five-to-10-year timeline. However, once it becomes more commonplace, digital biomarkers will become irrevocably integrated into the $10 trillion global health market as a means to make diagnoses earlier and improve health outcomes.”
While integration into clinically validated products is still a few years out, COVID-19 is pushing digital biomarkers forward as a key element in telehealth. Over the past five years, there has been a 70% YoY increase in the number of conditions that digital biomarkers can identify. When assessed using the U.S. Department of Energy Tech Readiness Level (TRL) scale, digital biomarkers fall into a wide range of readiness levels depending on the applicable market segment. This is largely because the majority of digital biomarker developers are in academia or other research institutions, with only a handful being wearable technology companies. Lux Research predicts digital biomarkers will gain traction in consumer health, medtech, and pharmaceutical healthcare segments in the coming year, with impact that will last for decades.
To learn more, download the report’s executive summary.
- Executive Summary: The Lux Take on the Future of Digital Biomarkers
- Blog: What Are Digital Biomarkers?