Looking at non-communicable diseases

that prevent women achieving their health goals.

We discover new ways for women to prevent, identify and manage non-communicable diseases (NCDs).

NCDs are responsible for 71% of deaths globally each year - approximately 41 million deaths - and this is expected to increase to 80% by 2040. NCDs also make society much more susceptible to communicable diseases such as Covid-19.

research areas

Fertility

01

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is the leading cause of infertility in women. It is associated with irregular cycles and hyperandrogenism, but because it is predominantly an endocrine disorder, it has several associated comorbidities such as diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease.

While it is estimated that 1 in 5 women worldwide are affected, this number is likely higher due to the multifactorial nature of this disorder masking accurate diagnosis.

02

Endometriosis

Endometriosis is a condition where the lining of the uterus grows in areas outside the uterine cavity, such as the ovaries and fallopian tubes. Apart from being the second cause of infertility in women, this condition can be crippling due to the pain associated with the abnormal tissue build up.

Approximately 1 in 10 women are thought to be affected by this disorder, but this number is an under-estimation.  Endometriosis is often overlooked as it does not have any measurable symptoms or biomarkers. Surgery, the only current treatment option, does not address the underlying (unknown) cause of the problem, so the condition is likely to return.

Our research pipeline is focused

on NCDs and related stages in women.

01

Menstrual Health

Menstruation is a natural phenomenon that every healthy woman goes through. Interestingly, the age at menarche (the age a woman starts her period) has shifted over the years where the average in the early 20th century compared to today went from 17 to 11 years of age, a phenomenon that may be due to a combination of lifestyle choices and environmental factors.

Earlier age at menarche is associated with premature menopause, and is linked to increasing risks of non-communicable disorders such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

02

Gynaecological Cancers

Cancer can affect any part of the female reproductive tract. Apart from cervical cancer, which is caused by infection with the high risk strain of the human papillomavirus (HPV), the other four cancers affecting the ovaries, uterus, vagina or vulva have no known cause.

It is estimated that more than 5 million new cases of any one type of gynaecological cancer are diagnosed every year, claiming over 3 million lives worldwide. These numbers are less accurate for low-middle income countries where medical care and record keeping is compromised.

03

Perimenopause

This transitionary period is marked by hormonal fluctuations that affect women both physically and mentally. Not only do women present with varying degrees of the physical changes associated with this period such as hot flashes, skin dryness and weight gain, but the length of the period leading to the menopause can take anywhere between 6 months and 12 years.

Lifestyle choices have been implicated in the severity of symptoms associated with this transitionary period, its duration as well as a woman’s predisposition to chronic diseases.

Research philosophy

Evidence-based, hybrid clinical research.

We believe that some areas of women’s health will only improve if we are able to integrate digital health solutions with traditional healthcare to build smarter diagnostic tools and methods.

We are pioneering a new hybrid model of clinical research that uses machine learning to accelerate the discovery process, and a decentralised, peer-to-peer network for clinical research and best practice.

Interested in our research?

Get in touch, and help us change women's health for the better.

Saba Alzabin Partnerships Img

Saba Alzabin, PhD

Co-founder and CSO