Google buys Lift Labs, maker of devices for Parkinson’s tremors

Google is adding another health-tech venture to the stable over at Google [x] – where they’re already working on things like glucose-monitoring contact lenses.

The new addition is Lift Labs, a small startup that’s working on gadgets to help make life easier for people who have neurodegenerative tremors, caused by Parkinson’s Disease or other conditions. Its chief product is a high-tech spoon that uses sensors and stabilizers to detect and compensate for tremors, making it easier for the user to eat.

Google cofounder Sergey Brin has been a big philanthropic supporter of research to combat Parkinson’s. His mother has the condition and Brin has said he’s at risk for developing it.

But Google as a company has also shown a big interest in exploring cutting-edge approaches to health issues. While Google [x] focuses more on devices and technology, the new Google spin-off Calico is gearing up to work on bio-tech and pharmaceutical research, as the Merc’s Steve Johnson recently reported. Google has also invested in other health tech companies including 23andMe, the genetic testing and research service.

Terms of the Lift Labs acquisition weren’t disclosed. The San Francisco startup has only a handful of employees, according to the New York Times, which first reported the deal Wednesday.

In a statement, Google said of Lift Labs:

“Their tremor-canceling device could improve quality of life for millions of people. We’re also going to explore how their technology could be used in other ways to improve the understanding and management of neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease and essential tremor.”

(Mercury News photo of Google sign)

 

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