Bellevue, Wash-based Somne has developed and is testing a collar worn around the neck and uses patented variable negative pressure (vNEP) technology to provide therapy to patients while they sleep. The collar prototype provides suction to prevent the weight of the person’s soft tissue from resting on their airway as they sleep; this keeps the patient’s airway open.

“Somne is launching with a desire to have equal focus on patient’s comfort, adherence, and efficacy. We’re utilizing variable negative pressure technology to develop this first of its kind medical device which reduces the discomfort that has plagued mass adoption of other sub-optimal products,” says Volha Hrechka, CEO of Somne, in a release. “Somne’s novel Class II medical device will be an alternative to CPAP machines and other treatments, with a more comfortable fit.”

Jerry Kram, MD, medical advisor at Somne, says in a release, “There are millions of people prescribed CPAP for treatment who are simply not using it. Left untreated, OSA can contribute to other serious health complications such as heart problems, high blood pressure, Type 2 diabetes, and cognitive decline. Somne’s device could be a game-changing, innovative approach for OSA management for sleep apnea patients worldwide. A comfortable fit from a non-intrusive device will make it easier for patients to embrace treatment.”

Somne continues to work on product development while starting the FDA investigational device exemption application. The company intends to bring its product to market as soon as 2024.