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UCSB Research Edges Closer to the Artificial Pancreas”

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Breakthrough technology in the treatment of diabetes — the largest non-infectious chronic disease in the world — has been developed by Santa Barbara researchers. Arguably, the most significant advance since local scientists isolated insulin, this innovation is poised to revolutionize disease management.

Currently, managing diabetes is relentless. To stay alive, people with type 1 diabetes need to take insulin multiple times a day, 365 days a year.  But what if control could take care of itself — if most high and low blood sugar events could be prevented?  That’s the idea behind artificial pancreas systems. They are life changing and here today.

Artificial pancreas systems bridge the gap between two pieces of diabetes technology that already exist:  the insulin pump and the continuous glucose monitor (CGM) sensor. With an artificial pancreas, a sophisticated computer program, instead of the person with diabetes, calculates how much insulin the pump delivers based on readings from the CGM. Such a “closed-loop system” requires little, or possibly no, input from the user and provides real-time information discretely to the user’s smartphone app.

 MIT Enterprise Forum event on January 21
and hear leading experts discuss the technology and opportunities around these breakthroughs.

 Keynote Speaker:

doyleProfessor Francis J. Doyle, III  is department chair and professor of chemical engineering at UC Santa Barbara, and Santa Barbara’s 2012 Innovator of the Year for the worldwide impact of his bioengineering research and development of artificial pancreas technology for type 1 diabetes patients. He led the development of process control software for the Artificial Pancreas System, which has been licensed at several sites worldwide for clinical trials. Frank Doyle holds the Duncan and Suzanne Mellichamp Chair in Process Control at UCSB and is a professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering as well as Chemical Engineering. He is Director of the Institute for Collaborative Biotechnologies and the Associate Dean of Research for the College of Engineering . In his role as Associate Dean, he has been responsible for a number of bioengineering initiatives at UCSB including a new Center for BioEngineering, and the design of a proposed Bioengineering Building. Dr. Doyle was named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the American Institute for Medical & Biological Engineering (AIMBE), the International Federation of Automatic Control (IFAC) and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). He received his Master’s degree from Cambridge University and Doctorate from the California Institute of Technology.


Fred_GluckFred Gluck
  was with McKinsey & Co. from 1967 to 1995 and led the firm as its elected managing director (CEO) from 1988 to 1994, when he retired and joined The Bechtel Group, where he served as vice chairman and director. Since moving to Santa Barbara in 1998 with his wife Linda, Fred has been active as an entrepreneur in local biotech and medical equipment and serves on the boards of Cynvenio Biosystems (co-founder and chair), TrueVision (co-chair) and CytomX (co-founder).

Fred recently retired after 15 years as a director of AMGEN (Thousand Oaks, CA) [NASDAQ] and was the presiding director of HCA (Nashville, TN) [NY Stock Exchange] prior to its LBO in 2007. He was vice chairman of New York Hospital and recently achieved emeritus status after 36 years of service. He is also active in eleemosynary activities in Santa Barbara, where he has served as a trustee of the Cottage Health System, the University of California at Santa Barbara (UCSB) Foundation, and as founding chairman of the Advisory Council of the (Kavli) Institute of Theoretical Physics.

Fred earned a B.S.E.E from Manhattan College in 1957 and an M.S.E.E in the same field from New York University in 1959. In addition, he did graduate studies in Operations Research at Columbia University.

peyserThomas Peyser is co-founder and chief scientist of Automated Glucose Control, LLC – an early stage medical device company based in Palo Alto, CA providing software solutions to insulin pump companies for commercialization of artificial pancreas technology. Dr. Peyser was Vice President of Science and Technology at Dexcom, in San Diego, CA for three years from 2011 to 2013. In this role, he led Dexcom’s Artificial Pancreas research and collaborations with academic research groups around the world. He worked especially closely with the artificial pancreas team at UC Santa Barbara and at the Sansum Diabetes Research Institute (now the William Sansum Diabetes Center). Dr. Peyser earned his PhD in plasma physics from the University of Maryland and worked for over 15 years in basic physics research at US government national laboratories. Dr. Peyser has 20 years’ experience in research and development in diabetes technology, including extensive work with continuous glucose monitoring and artificial pancreas technology. He has authored or co-authored several notable publications in Diabetes Care, Diabetes, Diabetes Technology and Therapeutics and the Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology. Dr. Peyser was the lead author on a recent review paper entitled “The artificial pancreas: current status and future prospects in the management of diabetes” which appeared in the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences.

Dr. Peyser has given presentations at numerous industry meetings and conferences, including the 72nd and 73rd Scientific Sessions, American Diabetes Association in 2012 and 2013 and the 12th Annual Diabetes Technology Meeting in 2011. He holds numerous issued patents in the field of diabetes technology with additional patents pending. Dr. Peyser’s current work is focused on facilitating and expediting the commercialization of artificial pancreas products for patients with diabetes.

This program will be moderated by Kristin W. Horton, CFA, President & CEO of Haven Capital Group, Inc.

Kristin-HortonKristin W. Horton, CFA is President/CEO of Haven Capital Group, Inc.  She is a 25-year veteran of the investment management field, a former Merrill Lynch investment banker specializing in IPOs of cutting-edge life sciences companies, and a published author in the area of molecular genetics.  Her responsibilities include identifying and overseeing Haven Capital’s investments in emerging technology companies.  Ms. Horton holds degrees in Biological Sciences (Wellesley College) and Financial Engineering (MIT Sloan School of Management).

Event Registration:

When:  Wednesday, January 21, 2015, 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Where: Cabrillo Pavilion Arts Center, 1118 E. Cabrillo Blvd., Santa Barbara, CA 93103


  • Student $15.00
  • Regular (Online pre-registration only) $30.00 — CLOSED
  • At the Door $40.00
  • Parking $6.00 (separate; paid at lot)


  • 5:00 – 6:00 Networking Hour, Check-in & Registration for Walk-ins
  • 6:00 – 7:30 Discussion
  • 7:30 – 8:00 Q&A

Registration includes appetizers and refreshments.

If you missed the early-bird registration, not to worry! We welcome walk-in guests to register at the registration table in the lobby of the venue.

Online event registration for Disruptive Medical Technologies: Diabetes Breakthrough on the Central Coast powered by Eventbrite


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