clock menu more-arrow no yes

Google's Alphabet is part of a $700 million effort to cure disease without meds

Verily and pharma giant GSK will pour the money into “bioelectronics.”

London 2012 Unveil the Anti-Doping Laboratory For The Olympic Games Oli Scarff / Getty

Verily, the life sciences company under Google parent Alphabet, is digging deeper into another experimental medical field and cutting another partnership deal that could net revenue.

On Monday, Verily and pharmaceutical giant GSK unveiled Galvani Bioelectronics, a new joint venture to push an emerging wing of medicine that uses electric signals and miniaturized devices, rather than chemical drugs, to treat chronic diseases.

The companies said they would invest £540 million (roughly $711 million) over seven years. GSK will own 55 percent equity in the new company; Verily has the remainder.

Here’s a primer on bioelectronics, which GSK has worked on since 2012.

Verily has tinkered with miniaturized, newfangled medical devices (like a smart contact lens) since its inception inside Google’s X research lab. It has created this type of joint venture before — with Johnson and Johnson for medical robotics.

Some biotech insiders and former employees have criticized Verily for glomming onto too many far-fetched health care projects without focus. In April, Alphabet exec and Verily patron Sergey Brin told Googlers that Verily was profitable on a cash basis.

This article originally appeared on Recode.net.