Fertility issues have hit so many families and the issue has become one of the leading causes of depression. For this reason, even scientist and tech firms have dedicated more time to help more families experience the joy of parenthood.
The global fertility services market is expected to reach Ksh3,127.9 Billion by 2023, says the consultancy Allied Market Research, nearly double where it stood in 2016. More women are clamouring for information about their reproductive health, and 15-minute doctor visits aren’t doing the trick.
Now, NextGen Jane, a 4.5-year-old, Oakland, Calif.-based company is hoping to use blood wrung from tampons to find early markers of endometriosis and, later, if all goes well, cervical cancer and other disorders.
With luck on their side, the tech firm has managed to secure Ksh908.1 Million worth of funding to start off the first phase of the projects which is mainly securing the materials of the technology.
Other participants in the round include Access Industries, Viking Global Investors, Liminal Ventures and numerous notable angels, including PhDs from Harvard Medical School and Stanford University.
Its approach is far more palatable than the options women have long suffered, which is to have a small camera inserted into their pelvic cavity in search of endometrial cells.
The idea with NextGen Jane instead is for a custom-made tampon to be worn for roughly two hours, placed inside a test tube as part of a home kit and sent to a lab for further analysis.
Of course, it needs to work first, and the technology hasn’t been approved by the FDA. In fact, it hasn’t been proven at all.
In an interview, NextGen CEO and co-founder Ridhi Tariyal said that a clinical trial is designed and ready to go, but that NextGen Jane needed capital to run a trial on roughly 800 women in order to establish the diagnostic efficacy of menstrual blood. With funding, she’d said, it would take the company about two years to collect a meaningful amount of data.