Event-Triggered Model Predictive Control for Embedded Artificial Pancreas Systems

IEEE Trans Biomed Eng. 2018 Mar;65(3):575-586. doi: 10.1109/TBME.2017.2707344. Epub 2017 May 23.


Objective: The development of artificial pancreas (AP) technology for deployment in low-energy, embedded devices is contingent upon selecting an efficient control algorithm for regulating glucose in people with type 1 diabetes mellitus. In this paper, we aim to lower the energy consumption of the AP by reducing controller updates, that is, the number of times the decision-making algorithm is invoked to compute an appropriate insulin dose.

Methods: Physiological insights into glucose management are leveraged to design an event-triggered model predictive controller (MPC) that operates efficiently, without compromising patient safety. The proposed event-triggered MPC is deployed on a wearable platform. Its robustness to latent hypoglycemia, model mismatch, and meal misinformation is tested, with and without meal announcement, on the full version of the US-FDA accepted UVA/Padova metabolic simulator.

Results: The event-based controller remains on for 18 h of 41 h in closed loop with unannounced meals, while maintaining glucose in 70-180 mg/dL for 25 h, compared to 27 h for a standard MPC controller. With meal announcement, the time in 70-180 mg/dL is almost identical, with the controller operating a mere 25.88% of the time in comparison with a standard MPC.

Conclusion: A novel control architecture for AP systems enables safe glycemic regulation with reduced processor computations.

Significance: Our proposed framework integrated seamlessly with a wide variety of popular MPC variants reported in AP research, customizes tradeoff between glycemic regulation and efficacy according to prior design specifications, and eliminates judicious prior selection of controller sampling times.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Algorithms
  • Blood Glucose Self-Monitoring
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / drug therapy*
  • Humans
  • Hypoglycemia / drug therapy
  • Hypoglycemia / prevention & control
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / administration & dosage
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / therapeutic use
  • Models, Statistical*
  • Pancreas, Artificial*


  • Hypoglycemic Agents