Showing all posts written by Lauren Hockett

Lauren Hockett
Lauren Hockett
Lauren Hockett is an associate in our San Diego office. She focuses on patent prosecution in various mechanical fields and the medical device industry, prosecution for design patents, and intellectual property due diligence.

Ms. Hockett received her J.D. from Duke University School of Law. During law school, she served with the Street Law organization, providing practical, participatory education to youth in a local juvenile detention center about the criminal justice system and constitutional rights.

Before attending law school, Ms. Hockett attended Stanford University and received a B.S. in Product Design Engineering, a program which closely follows the mechanical engineering curriculum while adding studies in ergonomics and aesthetics as well as incorporating classes from a wide range of other engineering disciplines such as materials science, electrical engineering, and computer science. While at Stanford, she worked with the patents team at a multinational internet information and software company.

Ms. Hockett worked as a summer associate at the firm in 2010 and joined the firm as an associate in 2011.
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CareKit: Apple’s New Open-Source Health App Platform

Apple announced CareKit on Monday, a new, open-source software framework designed to help app developers in the medical care space enable people to actively manage their own medical conditions.  The press release states that:

“[A]pps using CareKit make it easier for individuals to keep track of care plans and monitor symptoms and medication; providing insights that help people better understand their own health. With the ability to share information with doctors, nurses or family members, CareKit apps help people take a more active role in their health.”

According to the press release, CareKit is not an app itself but rather a software developer kit, or SDK, that can be used by the developer community to create apps.  As such, general users of Apple’s products won’t directly use CareKit, but in the near future those with specific health needs may find themselves using third-party software designed using Apple’s new platform.  Apple’s press release indicates that apps already being built using this SDK.  These include apps for Parkinson’s disease patients, post-surgery progress, managing chronic health conditions, home health monitoring, diabetes management, mental health and maternal health.

According to the press release, CareKit will be released as an open source framework allowing the developer community to build on the first four modules designed by Apple.  Apple’s existing modules include: (1) Care Card for helping people track individual care plans and action items; (2) Symptom and Measurement Tracker for recording patient symptoms; (3) Insight Dashboard for mapping symptoms in the Symptom and Measurement Tracker against the action items in the Care Card to show how treatments are working; and (4) Connect for sharing of information and communication with care providers.

Apple’s press release is available here, and more information about CareKit is available here.

Medtronic Announces Plans to Acquire RF Surgical Systems for $235 Million

Medtronic has agreed to acquire RF Surgical Systems Inc., for $235 million, according to a report by Nasdaq.  According to the news article, Medtronic plans to incorporate RF Surgical’s surgical sponge tracking and detection technology “as part of its Surgical Solutions division within the Minimally Invasive Technologies Group.”

The article further states that RF Surgical’s “proprietary detection system uses a low radio frequency (RF) signal to track and detect surgical gauze, sponges and towels (embedded with a RF tag) through blood, dense tissue and bone. The technology aims to reduce patient complications due to surgery, lessen unnecessary procedures, and increase efficiencies within the operating room.”

Össur Announces First Mind-Controlled Prosthetic Lower Limbs

In a recent press release, Össur announced that two amputees are the first people in the world able to control their prosthetic legs with their thoughts.  According to the press release, tiny implanted myoelectric sensors that have been surgically placed in the amputees’ residual muscle tissue trigger the desired movement via a receiver located inside the prosthesis.  Dr. Thorvaldur Ingvarsson, M.D., Ph.D, the orthopaedic surgeon who leads Össur’s research and development efforts and spearheaded the mind-controlled prosthetics project, is quoted as stating that:

The technology allows the user’s experience with their prosthesis to become more intuitive and integrative.

The result is the instantaneous physical movement of the prosthesis however the amputee intended. They no longer need to think about their movements because their unconscious reflexes are automatically converted into myoelectric impulses that control their Bionic prosthesis.

According to the press release, the mind-controlled technology works with all current commercially available Össur Bionic prostheses, including the company’s POWER KNEE, RHEO KNEE, PROPRIO FOOT and SYMBIONIC LEG.