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From 8 Years to Minutes - Hera Biotech's Less Invasive Path to Endometriosis Diagnosis

Endometriosis is an ailment that typically affects the pelvic organs but can also spread elsewhere in the body. It is a hidden enemy that affects an estimated 10% of women who are of reproductive age.

  • Endometriosis affects millions of women, causing severe pain and infertility. Diagnosis, however, takes 8 years due to the reliance on invasive surgery.
  • Hera Biotech's MetriDx is a minimally invasive in-office procedure that collects endometrial tissue for analysis, eliminating the need for surgery.
  • Hera Biotech's recent acquisition of Scailyte further strengthens its approach.

Endometriosis is an ailment that typically affects the pelvic organs but can also spread elsewhere in the body. It is a hidden enemy that affects an estimated 10% of women who are of reproductive age.

Endometriosis is a condition that is caused when tissue (similar to the tissue that lines the uterus- the endometrium) grows outside the uterus.

This misplaced tissue, though not in its assigned place, behaves just like it would inside a uterus; thickening, breaking down, and even bleeding during each menstrual cycle.

While it may sound similar to what a woman experiences during her usual cycle, it is much worse. Due to being trapped outside the uterus, the blood and the tissue have no means to exit the body leading to a whole myriad of problems.

Women with endometriosis suffer symptoms that range from painful periods, and pain with bowel movements or urination to excessive bleeding, infertility and so much more.

Unfortunately, the current method to accurately diagnose endometriosis is through laparoscopic surgery.

Due to its invasive nature, more often than not the diagnoses are delayed, with the average woman having to wait 8 years just to detect the tissue!

The patient's journey from initial symptoms to diagnosis and treatment can last up to 10 years.

Hera Biotech's Breakthrough

Founded in 2020 by Somer Baburek, Dr. Paul Castella, Dr. Bruce Nicholson, and Dr. Nameer Kirma, Hera Biotech is on a mission to understand the root cause of diseases in women's health and uncover new ways to treat them.

Hera Biotech's MetriDx does just that. The MetriDx Biotech is a minimally invasive procedure that collects a sample of the patient’s endometrium using a uterine brush biopsy.

This procedure is meant to be conducted quickly in an OB/GYN’s office, similar to a pap smear exam, Baburek explained.

This sample is then analyzed using single-cell microfluidics technology. Allowing Hera to identify specific biomarkers, which leads to a definitive diagnosis and the stage of endometriosis.

Benefits of MetriDx:

  • Eliminates the need for invasive procedures, minimizing patient discomfort and recovery time.
  • Provides a definitive diagnosis, reducing the risk of false negatives and unnecessary surgeries.
  • Enables earlier intervention, potentially improving treatment outcomes.
  • Reduces the agonizing wait for a diagnosis, allowing women to take control of their health sooner.
  • Saves healthcare systems and patients money by eliminating unnecessary surgeries and misdiagnoses.

Hera's Funding and Future:

Hera Biotech garnered significant support through funding rounds, including a $1.9 million seed financing in 2023.

Their investors primarily included female supporters from individual sources and investment firms such as Coyote Ventures, Stella Angels, Althea Group Ventures, and the Kendra Scott Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership Institute. 

In 2024, Hera acquired Scailyte's endometriosis assets, this strategic move combines their tissue-based diagnostic approaches, aiming for a highly accurate, non-surgical test.

The Scailyte test is about 78% sensitive and 91% specific, whereas the Hera Biotech original test is 97% sensitive and 97% specific.

“Women’s health is poorly, poorly, poorly funded,” Baburek said. “And we as a result haven’t applied technologies that are readily available to places like women’s health.

Hera Biotech's groundbreaking approach to diagnosing endometriosis is one of the many necessary steps taken to better women's medical studies.


Edited By Annette George

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