The Alphabet family just gained a member, after Sergey Brin announced that the zany, experimental life sciences group from Google X would become its own company. This is the same group of nerds that’s been building smart contact lenses. And it sounds like more crazy new inventions are on the way.
Brin didn’t say what the new company would be called, but he did highlight its mission “to develop new technologies to make healthcare more proactive.” The Google cofounder named Andy Conrad as the new company’s CEO and also flagged a few of the team’s biotech achievements including the smart contact lens—which will eventually be a real thing you can buy—as well as “a nanodiagnostics platform, a cardiac and activity monitor, and the Baseline Study.” The Baseline Study is arguably the team’s most ambitious project as it aims to create the most complete picture of the human body ever by collecting and analyzing the genomic and molecular data of thousands of people.
All that said, there’s still a lot that’s up in the air. Alphabet is the new company that Google’s founders created to act as a parent company for all of Google’s disparate efforts to create new products and services. That the life sciences experiment is ready to graduate from Google X is a good sign that some of these ambitious projects might be ready for showtime.
We’ve reached out to Google for more information on the new company—including what its official name—and will update this post if we hear back.
Update (3pm): Google responded and said that the company is just being referred to as the “life sciences team.” The spokesperson also forwarded this description:
The life sciences team at Google is focused on helping to move health care from reactive to proactive. Combining expertise from the fields of biology, chemistry, physics, medicine, electrical engineering, computer science, we’re developing new technology tools for physicians that can integrate easily into daily life and help transform the detection, prevention, and management of disease. Current projects in development include a smart contact lens with miniaturized glucose sensor; a nanodiagnostics platform to help with early detection of disease; and Liftware utensils for people with tremors.