For the first time in several years, a new pump company is making a reach into the US market. Meet Ypsomed, the Swiss company teaming up with Lilly Diabetes. Their device, The YpsoPump, is available in Europe and Canada and has some unique features. But when it launches in the US, likely in 2022, it will only use Lilly insulin. That kind of proprietary design is unique and is raising eyebrows. Stacey talks to Simon Michel, Ypsomed’s CEO (she’ll talk to Lilly in a separate interview airing in a few weeks).
In Innovations this week, what is an inverse diabetes vaccine? And could you be part of a trial for one?
This podcast is not intended as medical advice. If you have those kinds of questions, please contact your health care provider.
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Stacey Simms 0:00
Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Dario Health, manage your blood glucose levels increase your possibilities by Gvoke HypoPen, the first premixed auto injector for very low blood sugar and by Dexcom take control of your diabetes and live life to the fullest with Dexcom.
This is Diabetes Connections with Stacey Simms.
Stacey Simms 0:28
This week, my first interview with Ypsomed, the Swiss company teaming up with Lilly diabetes to bring a new pump to the US. A few features make YpsoPump unique, including their infusion sets which can help to cut back on insulin waste.
Simon Michel 0:43
Yes it’s terrible. It’s throw away so much insulin all the time. But you can disconnect Of course from your body, you change a cartridge, you put it back on. And that’s how you don’t lose your insulin in the tube.
Stacey Simms 0:54
That’s Ypsomed CEO Simon Michel, we talked about more features and he answers questions about the partnership with Lilly in innovations. What is an inverse diabetes vaccine? And could you be part of a trial for one This podcast is not intended as medical advice. If you have those kinds of questions, please contact your health care provider.
Welcome to our first full episode of 2021 Happy New Year. I’m so glad to have you here. Here we go. Another year of the podcast. My goodness, I’m your host, Stacey Simms. And as always, my goal here remains the same. We aim to educate and inspire about diabetes, with a focus on people who use insulin. any of that line sounds a little bit different if you’re used to my intro where I talk exclusively about type one. But you know, more and more people with other types of diabetes are listening as the show is growing. And I think that’s really important to acknowledge and to kind of dial back and see who we’re serving here.
My son was diagnosed with Type 1 14 years ago, my husband lives with type two diabetes, I do not have any type of diabetes. I’m the broadcaster in the family. This year on the show, I’m going to be focusing a lot on new technology, I think the delays that we saw in 2020, because of COVID are going to result in a lot more news than was originally planned or expected for 2021. You know, a lot of that innovation, a lot of those FDA submissions and approvals are getting stacked up, especially as we’re looking at the second half of 2021 and into 2022. So you know, why not get ready. And you all have told me that you are very interested in episodes about technology.
In this episode, we’re gonna learn all about Ypsomed and their plans for the US market. I have an interview scheduled with their US partners, Lilly diabetes, to talk more in depth about the proprietary nature of this pump. You can only use Lilly insulin in it in the United States. That’s interesting. We talk about that here in the interview. And then there are a bunch of questions that Ypsomed, really cannot answer that are more for Lilly. So I’m excited. I’ll be talking to them soon.
And just in the technology front, you’re going to hear from the folks from Tandem. I’ve got a Medtronic interview, I’m excited to share with you. And as we look forward, of course, I will still be doing the personal stories interviews because I love those too. But please let me know if there are companies that you would like to hear from this year, and we will get them on and yes, Big Foot beta bionics. I’ll be talking to everybody.
Okay, Ypsomed in just a moment. But first Diabetes Connections has a new sponsor this year. Yes, I am so happy to welcome our newest partner Dario, I cannot wait to tell you all about them. You know, we first noticed Dario a couple of years ago at a conference and Benny thought being able to turn your smartphone into a meter was pretty amazing. I’m excited to tell you that Dario offers even more now, the Dario diabetes success plan gives you all the supplies and support you need to succeed. You get a glucometer that fits in your pocket, unlimited test strips and lancets delivered to your door and a mobile app with a complete view of your data. The plan is tailored for you with coaching when and how you need it and personalized reports. Based on your activity. Find out more go to my daario.com forward slash Diabetes Connections.
My guest this week is the CEO of Ypsomed. And if someone is a leading maker and developer of injection and infusion systems, pumps and pens around the world, and not just for diabetes, as you’ll hear, they’ve been in the space for a very long time. But we’re talking to them because I know I have listeners around the world and I appreciate you all so much and many of you may have experienced with this pump, but we are us centric and Ypsomed announced that it is partnering with Lilly diabetes to bring their pump to the US market.
That announcement raised some eyebrows when it came out this fall because it will be the first pump in the US that will only be used With one type of insulin that can only be used with one type of insulin, and the US market is the only place where that will happen, this pump will be available in other countries that already is with different types of insulin. In other words, to be clear, you’ll only be able to use Lilly insulin, such as human log in the US, if so, mid pump. Now, Ypsomed has been around for a long time before this, of course, many of you who’ve been in the space for a long time will recognize some of the technology names and the brands that come up here. I was really excited to talk to the CEO, of Ypsomed Simon Michel, for the very first time, he’s been the CEO since 2014, at the company since 2006. And as you’ll hear, he kind of grew up in the company. And here’s our conversation.
Thank you so much for spending some time with me. I’m excited to have you on the show and learn more about this. Thanks for being here.
Simon Michel 5:53
Thank you, Stacey. I’m to give us a chance to talk and explain to what we’re doing. Yeah.
Stacey Simms 5:58
So let’s just start with the basics if you could tell me about Ypsomed because we’re really not that familiar with it here in the US. So if you wouldn’t mind taking me through. Let’s start with the the company history before we talk about the product because you are not a new company. You’ve been around for a while.
Simon Michel 6:14
Yes, I’d love to Absolutely. Thank you. So my father in 1985. Around the time when MiniMed founded the first company, the first pump in in Europe Disetronic. Some of you might still remember the name. And we were quite a successful pump company. And we sold the pump company at the Disetronic to Rouche in 2003, Rouche is still a name in Europe, roughly 80,000 patients on the product. But as they didn’t really innovate anymore, we decided to go back into pumping in 2010.
Stacey Simms 6:44
When you went back into the pump business, what was the product at the time.
Simon Michel 6:48
So we did two things in 2010, we signed with Insulet. We took over the DC distribution of the Omnipod in Europe. So basically build up the business for for Insulet. between 2010 and 2017. When we’ve given it back to them, and the parallel we have started to develop our own YpsoPump so in back into tubed pumping and thought what can we do better? What can we do better in terms of pumps? What is the community needing tomorrow? versus the old Disetronic pumps, what can we do better?
Stacey Simms 7:17
What did you find that you could do better? We’re going to talk about what the pump looks like and what it does, but big picture.
Simon Michel 7:24
So when we look at Ypsomed today for a whole, we make roughly 400 million in revenue, we grow at roughly 15% per year. So quite a healthy company despite of COVID we still grow and we have two businesses and it’s quite important to understand we do both pumps and pens. today. I’d say you’re by far largest pen and auto injector manufacturers in the world. We close roughly seven out of 10 deals in the pen space that’s pens for insulins, solostar pen some of you might know it’s also many of the Chinese pens, pens all over the world but all the injectors for autoimmune diseases migraine Astham, osteoporosis, So this is our device business. And the other half of our company the other 12 million is where we are very invest in pen needles in blood glucose monitoring and heat pump systems. And this we sell in Europe very successfully now for the past years in Europe and our own brand was owned subsidiaries and own people.
Stacey Simms 8:20
I’d like to know more about maybe we’ll talk more about the pens a little bit later on. But when you started talking about the pumps and the systems that you started making in the 2000s I’d love to get back to what was lacking in the pump market. What did you think needed to change that you could do differently and better.
Simon Michel 8:37
So a couple of things you know, I mean to the pump was very much medical device centric. It’s a very strong technic focus site is designed by engineers, great engineers from America from Switzerland from Germany, great people that think about what features we can add. But in the end of the day, we use these devices daily we don’t really want to know and hear and feel and about this device. So number one criteria for us was to make it small and light. Ypsopump is roughly 80 grams. I don’t know what this is in American weight measures but it’s a it’s a roughly half the weight of a Medtronic pump. I mean that gives you some kind of feeling very important, you wear it all day. The other thing is simplicity. We don’t need all those features. I mean if you look at the at the iPhone, some of these phones they have many features but they only show the features that you actually use. So really simple in a way what is really required you don’t need eight basal menus, you need two or three. Some might use but the big, big majority of us don’t need this vast opportunities.
Stacey Simms 9:38
When I look at the the pump that we’re talking about today. It does look tiny, it does look light and I did the I had to convert as well using my iPhone and that weight that 80 gram weight is point .176 pounds so very, very, very light. It looks like it’s smaller, it looks like obviously it’s lighter and doesn’t have a touchscreen. It Looking at his buttons?
Simon Michel 10:01
Yes, absolutely. So it has a touchscreen. It’s used like your mobile phone, you have one button to turn it on and off. That’s basically it. But other than that you have a regular touchscreen, which works at night perfectly.
Stacey Simms 10:13
It’s basically white on black. So it’s a very good contrast that you see, is the pump controlled by phone? Is it controlled remotely? Or is it still used as the touchscreen?
Simon Michel 10:22
So yes, very important. We are a compared to other manufacturers, we are a iPhone app centric company. So you everything you do we do from your phone. So you have your Dexcom data on your phone, you give your bolus from your phone, you do your basal rates from your phone, that’s that’s our strategy, we have the firmware updates that go via phone onto the pump and back. It’s very much app centric. The reason is we can be much, much faster and adding elements and adding new functions, new features, you don’t need to change the device, you know, you don’t want to change device or every year, simply too costly. This is why we set it up that way.
Stacey Simms 10:59
So that’s a huge deal. Because here in the States we’re all waiting for, you know bolus by phone, we’re waiting for pump control which Tandem and maybe Omni pod will have and hopefully 2021. But just to be clear, you have that already.
Simon Michel 11:12
So we have the apps and the whole app control features are now launched in q1 in all over Europe. Yes. All the other things integrate the integration. The data this is this is in place the apps is in the market. But the integration of this bolus button and the CGM together is Dexcom is launched now in the beginning of ‘21, q1.
Stacey Simms 11:32
But let’s talk I brought up the United States market. Let’s talk about this partnership with Lilly, what is that partnership going to look like? And we can talk about consumers in a moment. But what will that partnership look like? For you all? Tell me about the system? What will the Lilly IP so mad Dexcom system look like when you bring it to the States?
Simon Michel 11:52
Well, basically, for my relationship, it’s simple Ypsomed innovates and be manufacturer really supports in innovation and does the marketing and sales it was for us crystal clear from the beginning Ypsomed is a European company, it would be very tough for us to enter the big US market. So if you’re looking for a partner, and luckily Lilly was looking for a pump, so we found each other a year ago Ypsomed would be the is the comet actually registered a product to the FDA, the expected approval in the second half of 22. But it’s a fully branded Ace pump. So Dexcom is integrated as a bolus calculator calculator, the remote bolus function as a Type Zero controller that will follow by mid 23. And it is a Lilly product from a user perspective, but it’s manufactured in Switzerland.
Stacey Simms 12:35
It’s so interesting to hear you say these things that a few years ago would have been very foreign to us. I think my audience is familiar now the ACE designation, Type Zero, which is the software that’s inside. It’s incredible, just to take a moment and think how far things have come
Simon Michel 12:52
across fast pretty fast. Yes,
Stacey Simms 12:53
goodness. But to be clear, Type Zero is the I would call that a hybrid closed loop software. So that’s the software that will in very plain terms, work with the Dexcom to increase insulin or decrease insulin to try to keep people more in range. I just want to be crystal clear about that.
Simon Michel 13:11
None of those days. Absolutely. I mean, I mean, Type Zero belongs to Dexcom. And of course Type Zero is further working on on new versions of the controller. It’s a constant enhancement. At the moment, the features that you described are the ones it’s the low suspend function. It’s the hybrid adaptation of the baseline rate. There’s the micro bolus element, there are a couple of features which have one goal to bring us to bring patients with type 1 diabetes in in time and range
Stacey Simms 13:35
the ACE designation, and I get a little confused on this. So I apologize in advance. That’s all about interoperability. Right That’s about making these new technologies compatible with other devices.
Right back to our conversation, but first Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Gvoke HypoPen, and almost everyone who takes insulin has experienced a low blood sugar that can be scary. A very low blood sugar is really scary. That’s what Gvoke HypoPen comes in Gvoke HypoPen is the first autoinjector to treat very low blood sugar Gvoke HypoPen is pre mixed and ready to go with no visible needle means it’s easy to use. How easy is it, you pull off the red cap, push the yellow end onto bare skin and hold it for five seconds. That’s it. Find out more go to Diabetes connections.com and click on the Gvoke HypoPen logo. g book shouldn’t be used in patients with pheochromocytoma or insulinoma visit gvokeglucagon.com slash risk.
Now back to Simon talking about interoperability and the East controller.
Simon Michel 14:40
Well, I mean, the great thing is that it’s much easier to add different devices or different controllers to it. Once you have the ACE type designation you can actually change or upgrade a controller as it only is doing a lot of research on on controllers. So think about the might use their own controller in the future. Together with their new insolence. You can Think about situations where you can do better therapy better time and range when you combine new insulins with new controllers to actually use the insulin data to make better controllers. And also on the sensor side, it’s possible that other sensors would come to the system at the moment, we love our partnership with Dexcom. It’s great. It’s really works perfect. But it’s just it just shows an openness, that it’s basically easy to add something else.
Stacey Simms 15:22
I have another question you may not be able to answer. I will be talking to Lilly about this. And it’s really a question about them. I was at Lilly’s headquarters in Cambridge, the headquarters for this project a couple of years ago, where they showed us their pump prototype because at the time they were working on building their own hardware. And obviously that project, I don’t know if it’s put aside I’ll ask them about that. But this is not that pump. Correct. This is not the the pump that Lilly developed their partnership with you is using your hardware? If so meds pump, not this Lilly, it was a little circle disk pump that they showed us at the time.
Simon Michel 15:56
Yes. If the pump is purely manufactured by IP summit, it is the product designed here in Switzerland, that will be the pump that Lilly will use. You’re absolutely right, Lilly was working on our own pump program, patch pump type program for many, many years. But you have to ask them they recently paid to our knowledge, they recently recently stopped the project, and are now fully focusing on our joint partnership to bring a cement Lilly pump to US patients.
Stacey Simms 16:25
I appreciate you answering that. I know that’s more of a question for Lilly, and we’ll talk to them about that for sure. But you know, insulin affordability is a huge issue in the United States. And we are we are struggling with that and a lot of our health care system right now. But making a pump that only uses one type of insulin is going to limit options. And I gotta be honest with you, I think people are, it’s it may not be seen as a very popular feature. You know, we have insurance issues in the United States. I just went through this with my son, where we’d been on one insulin for many years. And then my insurance company said, No, you you have to use this other insulin. And that can happen here. Are you concerned about that at
Simon Michel 17:02
all, this will happen, of course, but it is ultimately beneficial for a health care system. And I can make the comparison with mobile phones. So if you have a mobile subscription, and you have your fixed lens subscription or internet subscription, you get a better deal. Now, this approach is to really bundle all these elements, and it will ultimately very much be much better beneficial for people with diabetes, it will be better for the healthcare system as of lower cost. So it’s definitely not increasing the cost. Yes, it is increasing, its increasing to some extent, your choice of insulin, whether it’s a short acting insulin for novel from Lilly, I fully agree but it will lower costs for healthcare system because of the bundle approach. It’s a really innovative partnership. Where is the entity manufacturer really decides to go the full way the first time in history? And this will be beneficial for us us healthcare system for sure.
Stacey Simms 17:49
That’s really interesting. So they’ll have to work with insurance companies to say if you cover this pump, you must cover this insulin. Again. Again, I have to talk to Lilly but I would imagine Yes,
Simon Michel 17:59
well, of course that’s a fair question. But I mean really wouldn’t invest so much in a partnership if they wouldn’t want to sell their core asset which is their insulin and in a prefilled cartridge, it will work with our pump. So it is the way this relationship is built up. But again, for Americans and for the healthcare system, I personally only see benefits in the end of the day in terms of cost.
Stacey Simms 18:23
That prefilled cartridge is something that is not currently available on any pump system in the US It was here for a while with some older pumps that are not on the market anymore.
Simon Michel 18:33
Well it was our pump Yes, it was the Disetronic pump with the three ml humalog cartridge was available in America between I would say 1998 and 2004 ish before Rouche stopped it, it will come back but it will come back in 1.6 format in a shorter version. We basically have this in the market already in Europe together with Novo Nordisk . So there’s a novel called pump cart that works with our pump that’s available in the market now since 2017. And is going the same way now this is a huge benefit to work with prefilled you don’t have to fiddle around and fill your cartridges you could just take it out of a fridge make it a bit warm, put it into pump and that’s a huge benefit.
Stacey Simms 19:12
It was very popular I think I want to say the Asante snap pump also had it for a while and that’s the one that I look at because
Simon Michel 19:20
yeah your idea right it wasn’t it wasn’t this one was not a market so it was not so successful. This pump You’re right. I mean the issue was with the D Tron pump, it was a bit too big, you know, it’s three ml cartridge, the 1.6 is shorter. That’s how we can build such a small pump. And the good thing about a pump is with our infusion set, you can actually keep the tube on. So you can change the cartridge you can keep the tube on you don’t have to throw away the insulin which is in your tool because you can change the cartridge. Keep the cube you’re using and you don’t lose insulin.
Stacey Simms 19:49
Okay, I have many questions. Wait, let’s go through those all at once. And I will get to the keeping the inset on but staying with the cartridge for a moment. So that’s 160 units In the cartridge and you said take it out of the fridge, pop it in the pump, is it good in the refrigerator for a long time, because right now if people kind of pre fill when they’re not supposed to the cartridges that are available on the market will start to break down. I’m assuming that’s not the case.
Simon Michel 20:15
Well, it’s, as we are used with pens a single expired expired date of two to three years. It depends on market by market, but you can keep it as your pen,
Stacey Simms 20:23
I was thinking two to three weeks for a filled cartridge right now, we’re not supposed to do that with the Tandem or the Medtronic pump.
Simon Michel 20:30
It’s a prefilled closed system as we are used with prefilled three ml cartridge. Some of you may use a reusable durable pen. Of course there you need regular in Europe, quite a lot of people use durable pens. And now it’s Medtronic coming this Companion, you will see more and more durable pens in America as well. This smart pen trend will definitely lead to more cartridge based pens where you exchange the cartridge. So it’s a standard closed cartridge system. You can keep it for two or three years in the fridge.
Stacey Simms 20:57
So talk to me about keeping the inset on. When you’re changing out the cartridge. You’re not priming the tubing, you’re not doing things like that,
Simon Michel 21:05
yes, we built in a valve in a way that you can take the connector off the pump, you exchange the cartridge, you put the connector back on the pump, and there’s no air coming into the tube to kick can continue to pump Of course you would disconnect it, you orbit set has a nice feature disconnect at the head. It has a 360 degree rotation feature. So it never cranks. But you can disconnect Of course from your body. You change a cartridge, you put it back on. And that’s how you don’t lose your insulin in the tube.
Stacey Simms 21:35
That’s wonderful people you know, it’s very difficult when you’re losing units upon units when your primary
Simon Michel 21:41
yes and no, it’s terrible. You throw away so much insulin all the time. So you can use this tool for seven days. So two or three cartridges. Of course it depends. If you if you need more insulin, you use it for two or three colleges if you use less insulin, use it for so it’s just I think seven days is what is what makes sense.
Stacey Simms 21:59
Tell me a little bit more about that inset because I I’ve said for years and years that insects are the weak link of pumping, they leak. They don’t work so well. You mentioned it rotates. Talk to me about your inset
Simon Michel 22:10
is a fully agree it’s definitely the space where part manufacturers have to spend much more effort in innovation. Our infusion set is today a three day infusion set we work on a five and seven day version to just keep it longer on it’s also regulatory work that has to be done here. It has a skin color. plaster so it doesn’t show so much if you wear it. When you’re at the beach. It has a 360 degree rotation at the head. So it really doesn’t crink that’s quite nice. It pops up clicks very nicely. You can click it behind your back without looking at, you hear it and it’s safe and close. It has a Blue tube so it doesn’t show so much on black clothing. A couple of nice features.
Stacey Simms 22:52
Is the skin tone one skin tone?
Simon Michel 22:55
It is a I would say it’s a as neutral as possible one skin tone. Yes. I mean, it’s better than white. You know, I think White is really shiny like we are used from other part manufacturers. It’s just a more neutral skin tone.
Stacey Simms 23:08
Yeah, I know. You know what I’m asking though? I mean, is a Caucasian. Is it more peach than brown?
Simon Michel 23:14
Yes, yes. Yes. Yes, it is.
Stacey Simms 23:17
All right. Well, your first feedback is you have to work on that for especially for the US market and other markets. So I’ll give you that piece of feedback.
Simon Michel 23:23
But input Thank you. No, you’re absolutely right. It’s a very good remark. I think I guess we are not so much used. From a diversity perspective over here in Western Europe. I think it’s a very, very important remark you’re making. And I definitely think it’s possible to do that. I think it’s a great idea.
Stacey Simms 23:38
That would be wonderful. Because, you know, I chuckled as I said it, but I appreciate you taking it seriously. It’s difficult to talk about these things. And I find myself sometimes I shouldn’t have left, they’re trying to defuse the situation a little bit. But we are a very large and diverse country over here. And we have lots of
Simon Michel 23:55
love. No, no, no, I fully agree. And they beat this doesn’t stop bad skin color. I think it’s a great idea. And I don’t see a reason why we should innovate on that to something we have never seen over here. It’s not a topic that we get from customer feedback over here in Europe, but it’s a great input. Thank you.
Stacey Simms 24:10
I appreciate you taking it that way. So let’s talk about the pens for a moment because we tend to focus on this show a lot about pumps. But at the same time, you have already mentioned so many interesting things about pens. Do you plan to bring you mentioned smart pens, you’ve talked about the different types of pens that Ypsomed makes already outside of diabetes? Is any of that available in the US market or do you plan to bring it here,
Simon Michel 24:34
so from the insulin pens today, only the Solostar pen from Sanofi is on the market. It’s a disposable pen. Also the to chill pen so the for the other type of Sanofi insulin. Other than that we are at the moment in discussion with several parties. For our smart pen. We have a smart pen for a 1.6 ml version and a three ml version, which connects to the app and the cloud. Of course, you have all the benefits of a smart pen you can use the CGM data including all the injection data which we really need. I mean, you need both sides, you need to be GMC champ data as well as the injection data when you have injected IV correctly. In fact, we have a lot of nice features on the pen tells you if it’s styled correctly or not. There’s a lie. It shows your holding time. How long enough to hold on many nice features you can do with smart pens today.
Simon Michel 25:21
Yeah, because a lot of people don’t still want pumps attached to them. And a pen is a real option
Simon Michel 25:26
Yeah, absolutely. I mean, worldwide, we have 50 million people that take shots every day, but only 1.5 million user pump. So I think a lot of the vast majority uses pens, so it definitely have to innovate more in that space. And I’m so happy now that Medtronic decided to do to make that step to make that move, and also Novo Nordisk making the move. Now Lilly will come with a solution and the space is now moving. And that’s very important.
Stacey Simms 25:51
It’s okay, if you can’t answer this, but can you give us an idea of what an Ypsomed smart insulin pen would do? I mean, we’ve The only frame of reference we have here in the States right now is companion medical, as you mentioned with Medtronic, could you give us an idea of what features might be available?
Simon Michel 26:07
Yes, absolutely. I mean, this pen is available in the analog version, so the non digital version in China for over 10 years, it’s a very robust pen the piston drop, push back with your finger, it has a bayonet coupling for the cartridge. It has a spring driven support for injection. So it don’t need to force if you have, or if you’re old or don’t have strength anymore. You just put a button in checks with a spring support. Very nice feature, we have a large display, which works at night, you have a light that gives the signal whether your dial is correct or wrongly, it’s red and green, it shows how long you have to check that it stops blinking when it’s injected fully out of his holding time, I think is the old time is very important. You have its Bluetooth connection, of course to the app connects automatically, it stores everything on the pen and on the app.
So all the features that you are used from Companion are now in there, as a will be a great, great product that we are working on here. And hopefully be able to introduce to America, we will take two two and a half years to come. We have to go through registration program together and still need to make the decision what partner will be the one that will bring it to the market. You know,
Stacey Simms 27:14
I should have asked you right at the beginning. But I’m curious, do you have any kind of personal connection to diabetes?
Simon Michel 27:21
Well, not personally, not not nobody in our family has type 1 diabetes, we have a couple of uncles and aunts that are on insulin on type two. But you know, I spent my whole life with diabetes. I think when I was 10 years old, I was throwing the first insulin pump. I still have this picture somewhere I can check and send it to you. It was it was an H Tron pump. Remember 1987. So I was my whole life. I mean, we went to the factory pump factory with my father, when I was a boy, my brother and me We ran around. And so he was my whole life. And then I went to university and I started in telecom industry. And it was very clear for me that I will come back. So I’m in this in this industry now really, for almost two decades. But we don’t have diabetes, but I’m very, very connected to it.
Stacey Simms 28:02
That’s great. I would love to see that photo or anything that you might want to share for sure. So I guess that leads me to this question, which is what gets you excited. I mean, your family has been in this business for so long, you’ve seen it change, you’re bringing something brand new to the United States in a couple of years. But what gets you out of bed every morning that you’re still excited to work in this space.
Simon Michel 28:22
I believe we are extremely privileged here to be able to work on products and services that make life easier for people with diabetes. And this is our business for 30 years. It’s a family business we are stock listed but the majority of the shares in our in our family. So we do have a large responsibility on it. It’s just great to see we are 2000 people now here working every day tried to make better devices, better solutions for people with chronic diseases also outside of diabetes and it’s it’s a huge privilege and motivation to work on it.
Stacey Simms 28:53
Well I feel like I just scratched the surface starting to talk to you about the partnership with Lilly and the pump and the pens. So I hope I can circle back maybe next year and check in on the progress and and talk to you as you get closer to bringing this to the US.
Simon Michel 29:06
Yes, let’s do that. That’s right to give an update. Once we filed we tried to file in summer 21 we still sorority and they will definitely be a good time again to give you an update.
Stacey Simms 29:17
Wonderful. Thank you so much for your time. It was wonderful to talk to you and I’m so excited to learn more.
Simon Michel 29:22
It’s a pleasure talking to you.
Simon Michel 29:29
You’re listening to Diabetes Connections with Stacey Simms.
Stacey Simms 29:34
So what do you think? I’ll be posting in the Facebook group to get your questions for my upcoming interview with Lilly and that is Diabetes Connections the group Do you think it’s possible that overall, this pump system will turn out to be less expensive as Simon thinks. I certainly hope so. But any kind of proprietary idea on a market that is already so limited just makes me nervous.
And I said this when I was at Cambridge a couple of years ago looking at their prototype for the pump that they’re no longer developing, apparently, I think they got into this pump partnership, because they know the writing’s on the wall for insulin price controls may be too strong a word, but limitations. I won’t get into it too much here. But you know, we’ve had this conversation many times before, I think that there’s going to be legislation at the state level, if not the federal level, to really change how insulin and other medications other treatments are priced. So we shall see.
And oh, my goodness, I hope our conversation about skin tone on the inset came off. Well, I mean, these things are awkward, as I said in the interview, but once he said skin colored, I mean, most of the inserts are just bright white. So once he said skin color, I had to ask, I had to follow up. I hope that came off. Okay. And look, we can seem to take it very seriously. So we shall see. Wouldn’t that be nice if medical devices could be a little more discreet on the skin on any color skin tone?
Okay, up next, let’s talk about an inverse vaccine for diabetes and explain what that is. But first Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Dexcom. Do you know about Dexcom clarity, it’s their diabetes management software. And for a long time, I really did think this was just something our endo used. You can use it though on both desktop or as an app on your phone. And it is an easy way to keep track of the big picture. I try to check it no more than once a week. Although I’ll be honest with you, there are times when I’m checking it every day, it really does help me and Benny dial back, I look for longer term trends. And I try not to overreact to what happened for just one day or you know one hour, the overlay reports help context to Benny’s glucose levels and patterns. And then you share the reports with your care team, which makes appointments a lot more productive. managing diabetes is not easy. But I feel like we have one of the best CGM systems working for us find out more, go to Diabetes connections.com and click on the Dexcom logo.
In our Innovations segment, this week, I want to talk a little bit about something called an inverse vaccine. This is a City of Hope, phase one trial. And the City of Hope is an organization that is looking to try to find cures for type one, I will link up more information in the show notes about them. And we really should talk to them. I it’s hard for me to believe we haven’t had them on the show yet. So that’s going on the list.
But basically, this would use someone’s own immune cells, a beta cell protein, and vitamin d3 to potentially treat type one, I’m sure that is a very simplified explanation. But these inverse vaccines are trying to stop certain immune responses rather than activate them. When you think about a regular vaccine, right, like the flu shot are the COVID-19 vaccine that we talked about just last week, what they’re doing is trying to stimulate the immune system, right, here’s a germ learn how to fight it, go immune system, right, the inverse vaccine is, here’s something coming in, don’t do anything stand down. Again, this is a very simplified version of what they’re trying to do. But they are recruiting, they can’t start the actual trial, they say until the pandemic is under control a much more but they are recruiting and they are screening patients right now. So I’m going to put up a link in the show notes.
And as always, you can go to Diabetes connections.com. And look at the episode homepage. If you’re listening on an app, a lot of them are great to listen to, but the show notes aren’t so hot. So if you have any trouble, just head on over to the homepage. As usual. The trial I should say is open to adults with type one between the ages of 18 and 45. You have to have been diagnosed in the last one to four years. There’s a lot more listing after that. And by the way, this is a follow up on a small study in the Netherlands where they they looked at safety. So you know if you get into this definitely keep us posted. I’d love to know more.
A couple of quick housekeeping things before I let you go this time around. I am taking part in a free summit at the end of this month. It is the fearless diabetic summit. And I will be posting more about that in the group. And on our website. This is a really interesting summit that is trying to answer the question, what would you tell yourself if you could go back to your first two weeks of diagnosis, and they talk to 30 different people in the diabetes space, you know, experts and educators and NGOs and athletes and I think I’m the only parent that they talk to. But it’s a really interesting concept. And I’ll talk more about that as the month goes on. I’ll put a link in the show notes to the fearless diabetic summit.
Also, if you haven’t seen it yet, I have a free ebook Diabetes Connections extra that I put out late last year and this is a set of transcriptions and they are proofed and they’re beautifully laid out easy to read. They are the extra episodes that I did a little while ago all about the basics of diabetes management ketones. What is insulin? What are lows? How do you use a CGM to its best practice insulin pumps, all that kind of stuff. I think it’s a really good read for newer diagnosed families and for you to give to people in your life that you would like to better explain diabetes to it is an email signup. But you know, I don’t spam anybody, most of you are on the email list already. But if you want to send that out, I’ll always put the link in the show notes to that as well. That is the free ebook.
And finally, I’m this close to announcing my new project. And it really doesn’t have anything to do with diabetes. But if you’re interested in podcasting, you’ll want to sign up, I am going to be teaching a course this year, I’m teaching two courses actually, on podcast, monetization, get paid to podcast, I have been really interested in this subject, because I’ve helped a lot of people kind of behind the scenes for the last couple of years to do this, ethically to do this. Well to do it in a way that makes sense so that your listeners don’t have to pay anything, but that if you want to spend enough time on your podcast to make it quality, you eventually are going to look at options like this. And you know, like diabetes, there’s some snake oil in the space. There’s some stuff out there. That’s pretty questionable. And I want to help people do this with transparency with disclosures to do it right. So stay tuned for more than that. I will not be hammering you with this. You’re here for diabetes news, but I wanted to let you know, and I’m really excited about it.
Thank you so much to my editor John Bukenas from audio editing solutions. Thank you so much for listening. I’m Stacey Simms. I’ll see you back here next week. Until then, be kind to yourself.
Diabetes Connections is a production of Stacey Simms Media. All rights reserved. All wrongs avenged