JustLight, an Ann Arbor area company, is hoping to help revolutionize the health care system
The entrepreneurial / start-up spirit is alive and well in the Ann Arbor area. Evidence of this can be found in a company called JustLight, which has grown from cleaning laundry with UV light to inventing a revolutionary medical device meant to help people living with Alzheimer’s.
JustLight’s vibrant growth is seen in its big announcement that it made this summer when it said it has launched clinical trials, ahead of FDA approval, for its unique medical device
called Sunflower Rx.
To understand JustLight and the Sunflower Rx, one must begin with its mission.
“We are on a mission to revolutionize healthcare through universal access to Photobiomodulation.”
Photobiomodulation is defined as the medicinal use of red or near-infrared light to heal, repair, and energize cells in human bodies.
JustLight’s objective with the Sunflower Rx and photobiomodulation is Alzheimer's Treatment. It said with its device it can help safely reverse cognitive decline for people living with Alzheimer's.
According to JustLight, photobiomodulation supports reversal of cognitive decline through several key mechanisms, from boosting cerebral blood flow to reducing inflammation.
A big part of its mission is to do so without any negative side effects.
Another part of its mission is access.
JustLight said they are dedicated to bringing this breakthrough technology to the public.
In describing what JustLight is about, Founder and CEO Peter Forhan said light is important, because like food, water and air, it is a requirement.
His path into the light and its use as a tool began out of frustration that there were not enough alternative options for his slightly dirty clothes. Forhan started JustLight as a UV light laundry cleaning company. As an inventor, he worked on a prototype device that would sanitize and deodorize his clothes. After some work, he was successful.
From there, Forhan began looking into using UV light for hand cleaning.
This was before COVID, so when the pandemic came, JustLight and its potential caught the attention of others. Through investments the company was able to grow and enabled Forhan to bring on a team of like-minded people.
As a side note, JustLight is also making strides with its additional company product, Violet, which is a UV-C hand-cleaning device created to kill germs. A clinical study for this is underway at the University of Michigan.
As JustLight grew, Forhan said they further explored the world of light therapy and Photobiomodulation. He said over time they learned that light not only can be used as a cleaning tool, but at its core it is a requirement for human health.
“This biological energy that we use to repair cells, heal skin, improve health outcomes, grow hair and dozens of other things,” he said. “This realization really caused me to pivot the company and develop Sunflower and making red light accessible.”
Now two years later, this summer’s press release gives insight as to where this public benefit corporation stands.
The press release states, “This revolutionary technology designed by JustLight, in partnership with Light Tree Ventures and Kaiyan Medical, aims to be the world's first FDA-cleared safe and effective Alzheimer's medical device.”
"Our patent-pending technology automatically adjusts the LED Light output to replicate clinical parameters, delivering precise and effective photobiomodulation treatment in the comfort of one's home," said Forhan in the press release. "We aim to solve the $321 billion Alzheimer's crisis and revolutionize our health care system through universal access to photobiomodulation."
The release detailed some of the steps in helping the company get to this point.
“Following a primary investment last year by Fortune 500 Japanese Corporation, Asahi Kasei, JustLight began pilot studies with senior home partner, Nexcare Health Systems, LLC, to better understand possible clinical outcomes of Sunflower use for patients living with Alzheimer's-based dementia. According to Dr. Janet Price, JustLight's Chief Scientific Officer, the pilot program with Nexcare assisted JustLight in identifying possible improvements to the device and routines to better fit customer needs.”
"After six weeks of continuous Sunflower use, Nexcare participants reported positive experiences and showed improved or stable cognition scores based on standard clinical measures," Price said in the press release. "The majority of mild-moderate individuals experienced an improvement in standardized cognitive test scores in one month of daily use. Participants had improved mood, better communication with staff, and one individual stopped being a fall risk."
To learn more, go to https://www.justlight.com/.