Puretech Ownership
Product Candidate
Initial Indication(s)
Stage of Development
45.8% Equity
Sonde One for Depression4

Depression symptom change detection and monitoring

Clinical Trials
Sonde One for Respiratory4
Respiratory risk detection & monitoring app
Released

4. These product candidates are regulated as devices and their development has been approximately equated to phases of clinical development.

Developing a voice-based technology platform to provide a more complete picture of health in just seconds

Founded by PureTech, Sonde is developing a voice-based technology platform to measure health when a person speaks. Sonde’s proprietary technology is designed to sense and analyze subtle changes in the voice to create a range of persistent brain, muscle and respiratory health measurements that provide a more complete picture of health in just seconds. As of October 2020, Sonde has collected voice data from over 50,000 subjects as a part of the ongoing validation of its platform, and it has also initiated research and development to expand its proprietary technology into alzheimer’s disease (AD), respiratory and cardiovascular disease, as well as other health and wellness conditions.

  • Program Discovery Process by the PureTech Team
    • PureTech was interested in new ways to detect and quantify disease in a low- to no-burden manner that could allow for more proactive and potentially effective interventions. PureTech selected vocal features as leading source of health data for this purpose, particularly given the evolving technology landscape where voice interactions with devices are rapidly increasing, and identified and in-licensed proprietary technology from Thomas Quatieri, PhD, at MIT’s Lincoln Laboratory in May 2016. PureTech developed additional, novel intellectual property around this concept and helped advance the technology from an academic concept to a commercially-focused technology. A core PureTech team member who played a critical role in founding Sonde is currently the chief operating officer. 
  • Patient Need & Market Potential
    • The lag between onset of disease and accurate diagnosis and beginning of treatment can be measured in years for many high-burden health conditions, including depression, Alzheimer’s disease (AD), multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease and cardiovascular and respiratory diseases, to name just a few.
    • Depression alone affects approximately 17 million adults in the United States.
    • Near-continuous health information, powered by Sonde’s technology, has the potential to improve screening, monitoring and timeliness of treatment of high-cost conditions, broadly improving outcomes and care efficiency.
    • Development of effective therapies for central nervous system (CNS) diseases and disorders is hampered by the high cost and inherent variability of these diseases and the reference diagnostic measures used to characterize them. Objective digital tools that can augment, and perhaps one day replace, the current clinical endpoints with novel measures that can be quantified with more meaningful accuracy and less burden can improve patient enrollment and drug development for a range of important conditions.
  • Innovative Approach to Solving the Problem
    • Sonde is developing a voice-based technology platform to measure health when a person speaks. Sonde’s proprietary technology is designed to sense and analyze subtle changes in the voice to create a range of persistent brain, muscle and respiratory health measurements that provide a more complete picture of health in just seconds. 
    • PureTech believes Sonde’s Vocal Biomarker program has demonstrated the potential to screen and monitor for disease using information obtained from an individual’s voice on commonly-owned devices, such as smartphones and smart speakers, and it has the potential to fundamentally change the way mental and physical health is screened and monitored.
  • Milestones Achieved
    • In July 2020, Sonde launched Sonde One for Respiratory, a new voice-enabled health detection and monitoring app, to potentially help employers improve employee safety, meet government mandates and satisfy their own administrative needs as they reopen office doors in a COVID-19 environment. Leveraging the company’s advanced vocal biomarker platform and machine learning technology, Sonde One combines 6-second voice analysis, CDC-informed COVID-19 questionnaire and body temperature reporting in one app and is designed to give employees clear instructions about where they can work within one minute. Sonde partnered with corporate wellness solutions provider Wellworks for You to bring the health screening tool to market.
    • Sonde is also creating the first mobile device-based automatic assessment of depression, Sonde One for Depression, a new voice-enabled health detection and monitoring app, to potentially help employers and payors improve engagement in services to address employee and patient behavioral health needs. Leveraging the company’s advanced vocal biomarker platform and machine learning technology, Sonde One for Depression will also combine 6-second voice analysis with validated self-report questions in one app and is designed to give employees a timely indication of how important measures of mental health and symptoms may be changing.
    • As of October 2020, Sonde has collected 300,000 voice samples from over 50,000 subjects as a part of the ongoing validation of its platform, and it has also initiated research and development to expand its proprietary technology into AD, respiratory and cardiovascular disease, as well as other health and wellness conditions.
    • In April 2019, Sonde completed a $16 million Series A financing round, including the issuance of $6 million in shares upon conversion of debt into equity, to expand the capability of its voice-based technology platform for monitoring and diagnosing mental and physical medical conditions across additional health conditions and device types and to fund commercialization activities.
    • In October 2019, David Liu joined Sonde as chief executive officer and a member of its board of directors. 
  • Expected Milestones
    • Sonde also has ongoing discovery efforts to expand its pipeline.

Sonde launched Sonde One for Respiratory, a new voice-enabled health detection and monitoring app, to potentially help employers improve employee safety, meet government mandates and satisfy their own administrative needs as they reopen office doors in a COVID-19 environment. Additionally, the company’s Vocal Biomarker program has demonstrated the potential to screen and monitor for disease using information obtained from an individual’s voice on commonly-owned devices, such as smartphones and smart speakers, and it has the potential to fundamentally change the way mental and physical health is screened and monitored.