Investing in adyn: Building Science-backed Health Options for Women
We’re excited to co-lead with Lux Capital the seed round for adyn, a Seattle-based, female-led precision medicine startup that applies hormone and genomic analyses to eliminate the guesswork in selecting birth control pills.
Our unique physiology and our experiences with our bodies shape our daily lives. We’ve had access to the pill since the 1960s, and yet choosing from among the 200 different kinds of birth control remains a “one-size-fits-all,” trial-and-error process. Women have endured a medical research gender gap that confuses, discomforts, depresses, debilitates, and sometimes kills us. M13 Partner Christine Choi knows because birth control pills stopped her heart twice with blood clots (pulmonary embolism, DVT).
At M13, we invest in consumer tech that drives future behavior. In health and wellness, we look for ways to open access to health for all. So when geneticist and adyn founder Dr. Elizabeth Ruzzo introduced us to a personalized approach to birth control, we were excited to support her and close a medical research gap that affects all of us daily.
Dr. Ruzzo received her Ph.D. from Duke University in human genetics and genomics where she analyzed big data with next-generation sequencing. During her postdoctoral fellowship at UCLA, she used machine learning to uncover 16 new autism genes, showing clear evidence of inherited risk for autism.
adyn will transform healthcare by focusing on individuals who are traditionally underserved by our healthcare systems. adyn does this by integrating two biological readouts: genetics (read one time) and hormone levels (read multiple times throughout your life). By partnering with individuals, adyn will provide medically actionable scientific insights and empowers them to proactively optimize their health—from birth control, to fertility, and beyond.
What does this have to do with reducing side effects of the pill? adyn’s first product is a personalized at-home birth control selection kit, the first-ever test that uses your biology to personalize your birth control choice by assessing genetic risk for two of the most serious side effects: blood clots and depression. adyn’s trained birth control specialists share personalized recommendations and are available for ongoing care. Applying hormone and genomic analyses to transform the birth control selection process removes the guesswork and introduces a new standard of care.
Each individual is born with unique genetic variants and a hormonal profile that changes throughout our life. Achieving gender equality in science and medicine will improve our standard of care and long-term health outcomes, not only for women but everyone. Today the birth control process is unscientific, unpredictable and unpleasant. Tomorrow with precision medicine companies like adyn, we will be treated as individuals and healthier for it.
We are thrilled to co-lead with Lux Capital alongside Civilization Ventures, Concrete Rose Capital, Y Combinator, Madrona Pioneer Fund, Ascend VC, and angel investors including Anne Wojcicki of 23andMe, Nish Bhat of Color Genomics, Qasar Younis of Applied Intuition, and Ashley Mayer of Glossier. Congratulations, Elizabeth—we’re excited to build an inclusive and healthy future with you.
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