USA – Biogen and Happify Health, the Intelligent Healing Company, have announced a collaboration to provide a digital solution for patient education and engagement, powered by artificial intelligence (AI), to support people living with multiple sclerosis (MS).
The product will include Happify’s community for people living with MS, as well as access to neurology providers like doctors and nurses, mental health professionals, dietitians and rehabilitation professionals. Biogen will contribute educational content and patient care resources.
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune disease that affects the central nervous system. MS eats away at the myelin sheath that protects nerve fibers. MS-related damage to myelin disrupts communication between the brain and the rest of the body.
According to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, nearly one million people have MS in the US, and more than 2.3 million people live with MS globally. Women are two to three times more likely to develop MS than men.
The disease can cause symptoms like numbness or tingling, weakness, difficulty walking, vision problems and dizziness.
Biogen and Happify Health are pitching the collaboration to help people with MS manage their care journey, improve their wellbeing, learn about treatment options, consult with experts, and connect with other people in the MS community for support.
“It can be challenging for people living with MS to stay up-to-date with the latest treatments, interpret new symptoms or investigate changes in their health that may or may not be related to MS,” Ofer Leidner, president of Happify Health, said in a statement.
Jason Hawbecker, Head of Strategic Partnerships & Collaborations at Biogen on his part said, “We are excited about the potential of this partnership to provide overall support for the MS community.”
Happify has been on a partnership tear in recent months. Earlier this month, the digital therapeutic company announced a collaboration that is focused on women’s health with insurer Anthem, which is soon to be rebranded to Elevance Health.
In March, Happify entered into an agreement with healthcare-services and pharmaceutical company Zuellig Pharma to commercialize two of its prescription digital therapeutics in Asia.
The startup also recently launched a digital program for people with psoriasis in Spain, Italy and the UK as part of a partnership with Barcelona-based pharma company Almirall. Happify also closed a US$73 million Series D funding round in March 2021.
Biogen isn’t new to the digital health space either. In May, it entered into a licensing agreement with prescription digital therapeutics startup MedRhythms to develop and commercialize its MR-004 product, which aims to improve mobility for people with multiple sclerosis.