Women have been underrepresented in scientific research due to their biological complexity, says biotech company InsideTracker
InsideTracker, a personal health analysis and wellness guide, announced that its Ultimate Plan will now provide female users with analysis and optimization guidance for three new biomarkers critical to extending a women’s healthspan and easing the transition through menopause.
The company raised $15M in a Series B funding round led by PeakBridge last fall.
According to InsideTracker, a biotech company founded by scientists in the fields of aging, genetics and biology, this new function equips and empowers women to take an active part in health-related conversations though a simple blood test.
With a focus on personalization, InsideTracker’s data-driven, AI-powered plan now provide female users with information about three additional biomarkers: estradiol, progesterone and thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH).
Monitoring TSH, in particular, is vital to women’s health and wellness, as one in eight women will develop thyroid issues and are more likely than men to develop thyroid problems. In addition, an imbalance can cause issues with menstrual cycles, the ability to get pregnant and problems during pregnancy.
Women have been historically underrepresented in scientific research and, as a result, health products, points out InsideTracker. The disparity in offerings can be attributed to several factors, including a reluctance to consider natural hormonal cycles when designing clinical studies.
While the healthspan and longevity industry has featured men at the forefront of the conversation, it has neglected to provide women with the nuanced guidance unique to their biology, which is part of InsideTracker’s mission.
It’s an undertaking that is long overdue.
As noted by McKinsey, data gaps exist in women’s health, influencing health outcomes by creating blind spots in the findings that drive research design, investment decisions and priorities.
“Women and people with ovaries are five to eight times (more) likely than men to have thyroid problems, and an estimated 80% of this population will experience an issue with estrogen or progesterone imbalance during their lifetime,” said Renee Deehan, Ph.D and VP of science at InsideTracker. “We are pleased to provide our consumers with a higher resolution picture of their biology through the addition of estradiol, progesterone and TSH, as well as personalized insights based on their unique signature of these hormone levels against the backdrop of other markers of health.”
In addition to InsideTracker, other companies are zeroing in on female consumers and meeting their biological needs.
Hormona, a London-based startup, raised £1.2M in pre-seed funding last year in preparation for a launch in Europe and the U.S.
The digital health startup, which concentrates on hormonal health, was founded by Karolina Lofqvist and Jasmine Tagesson after Lofqvist struggled with hormone imbalance.
Hormona’s mission is to measure hormones via an at-home urine test designed to offer women the necessary information to understand and manage their hormones.
Oura currently offers a period prediction feature, providing a five-day prediction window. The wearable device also integrates with Natural Cycles, an FDA-cleared non-hormonal birth control app that uses Oura data to plan or prevent pregnancy and track menopause.
The filing indicates that the wearable tech company is working on hot flash detection using physiological data gathered by its sensors, such as increased skin temperature and heart rate. The Oura ring hopes to predict when future hot flash episodes may occur.
Movano has also targeted female consumers. The wearable tech company is soon launching Evie, a medical-grade health wearable ring designed for women. The Evie ring tracks menstrual health, sleep and activity and anticipates adding non-invasive glucose monitoring in the future. The ring was featured at CES 2023.
Courtney Rehfeldt has worked in the broadcasting media industry since 2007 and has freelanced since 2012. Her work has been featured in Age of Awareness, Times Beacon Record, The New York Times, and she has an upcoming piece in Slate. She studied yoga & meditation under Beryl Bender Birch at The Hard & The Soft Yoga Institute. She enjoys hiking, being outdoors, and is an avid reader. Courtney has a BA in Media & Communications studies.