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India Funding News:

  • W Health Ventures invested its pre-seed round of funding in Elevate now, India’s first medical weight loss company. Elevate Now offers a doctor-led, medication-based weight loss program based on clinical protocols designed specifically for the Indian population.
  • Healthtech startup SigTuple has raised $4.3 Mn (INR 34.5 Cr) in a fresh funding round led by its existing investors Endiya Partners and Accel. The startup will use the funds to expand its geographical footprint and product portfolio.
  • Venture capital firm B Capital has raised its first healthcare fund, committing to invest $500 million in healthcare-focused startups in Asia, and other continents. B Capital has backed over 20 startups in the healthcare sector. 

Global Funding:

  • Kindbody technology-driven fertility clinic announces $ 100M in new funding to further accelerate growth. 
  • US-based femtech startup, Egal raised $1 million in investment in angel funding to launch a new menstrual pad that will be as accessible as toilet paper.
  • The US-based women’s health start-up Twentyeight Health has raised US$8.3m in funding to improve access to healthcare in underserved populations. The New York-based company focuses on increasing affordable reproductive and sexual healthcare access to underserved communities via telehealth services, supporting the full spectrum of patients, including lower-income individuals and communities of colour.
  • Skin + Me is a UK-based startup that recently secured £10M in Series B funding led by Octopus Ventures. Skin + Me’s success is driven by increasing consumer awareness of prescription ingredients and a growing trend towards personalization in the skincare industry.

FemTech News:

  • Veera Health forays into nutraceuticals with the launch of VeeVital PCOS support 
  • India’s Supreme Court dismisses plea on menstrual leave with a caveat. A petition seeking direction to all Indian states to frame rules for menstrual paid leaves for female students and working women at their respective workplaces was on Friday (February 24) dismissed by the Supreme Court.
  • According to research, approximately 50% of maternal deaths (age 15-29 years) in rural India are due to pregnancy complications and childbirth. 
  • Vara, a German medical technology company focused on breast cancer screening and detection, has announced its expansion to India. 
  • BeatO reports more than 20x growth in its female users in the last 5 years. Only 40 per cent of BeatO’s female users are from metros whereas the majority share of 60 per cent belongs to tier 2, 3, 4 and beyond. 
  • Digital India is now visible everywhere; E-Sanjeevani becoming life-saving app for common man: PM Modi
  • A recent study on the level of awareness of medical termination of pregnancy has claimed that one of every three women it interviewed did not consider abortion as a health right or were unsure of it. The survey by the NGO Foundation for Reproductive Health Services India (FRHS India) also claimed 32 per cent of respondents were unaware of abortion as a legal right and that 95.5 per cent of Indian women were uninformed of the existence of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy (Amendment) Act, 2021.

Global Companies:

  • Reckitt and the Health Innovation and Investment Exchange (HIEx), in partnership with the Kofi Annan Foundation and the Eco Bank Foundation, have launched the Women in Innovation Fund (WiNFUND) to “champion” the next generation of African entrepreneurs. The initiative aims to address the lack of healthcare access and investment.
  • The US non-profit organisation Elevance Health Foundation has expanded its maternal and child health grants with an additional US$1.6m in awards. Each grant will address maternal and child health, focusing on issues, including mental health, access to care, support, and health-related social needs.

FemTech India Partner Company News:

  • BioSpectrum India’s latest March issue features inspiration from emerging female entrepreneurs, innovators, and business leaders. FemTech India members , Gitanjali Banerjee, Swathi Kulkarni and Sujata Pawar are featured under Empowering women in FemTech. 
  • Femved will be doing a virtual launch on the occasion of women’s day with guest speakers – Nidhi Pandey, Lindsay David & Navneet Kaur 
  • Humm Care’s founder Carina Kohli published an article for Economics Time and ETHRworld. The article is titled “Why is India Inc. still in need of more HR-friendly policies and benefits for working mothers and parents?”
  • Sirona Hygiene was recognized amongst the ’50 most promising and top D2C brands’ at the BM Marketing World D2C Awards 
  • Miyara, in collaboration with Dr Vikram Talaulikar is hosting a webinar on “Things you wish you knew about Menopause and didn’t know whom to ask” on account of International Women’s Day.

Drugs, Diagnostics, and Pharma:

  • Akums Drugs and Pharmaceuticals Limited y announced that it has partnered with Lyrus Life Sciences for several patented technologies and formulations. Lyrus is a research and technology-driven global speciality pharmaceutical company committed to developing differentiated and innovative products.
  • Akums Drugs and Pharmaceuticals Limited y announced that it has partnered with Lyrus Life Sciences for several patented technologies and formulations. Lyrus is a research and technology-driven global speciality pharmaceutical company committed to developing differentiated and innovative products.
  • MedGenome Labs announced the launch of a ground-breaking first-ever Facioscapulohumeral Muscular Dystrophy Type 1 (FSHD1) test in India. MedGenome Labs is the first commercial lab to offer this new genetic test that will help individuals with FSHD1 to get an early and accurate diagnosis, leading to improved disease management options

Government News:

  • The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister, Narendra Modi has approved a historic Bill for the welfare of Women in the Country – the Assisted Reproductive Technology Regulation Bill 2020.  This follows the introduction in Parliament of the Surrogacy Regulation Bill 2020 and the approval of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Amendment Bill 2020. These legislative measures are path-breaking steps to protect women’s reproductive rights.
  • Two products that would handle large genomic data and biomolecular structural data securely have been developed by the Advanced Computing Development Center (C-DAC). Both were launched by the bioinformatics group during a three-day symposium at Accelerating Biology 2023: Discovery to Delivery.
  • More than 150 delegates from 17 countries will likely attend the first traditional medicine conference under Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) in Guwahati. The SCO, an intergovernmental organisation founded in Shanghai in 2001, currently comprises eight Member States – China, India, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Pakistan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. It also has four Observer States and six “Dialogue Partners”.

Research, Insights, and Market Projections:

  • Researchers have developed a first-of-its-kind small, flexible and stretchable bandage that accelerates healing by 30 per cent through the delivery of electrotherapy directly to the wound site.In an animal study, published in the journal Science Advances, the new bandage healed diabetic ulcers much faster in mice than those without the bandage.
  • New Research Suggests Endometriosis Could Be Controlled with Monthly Injections. A recent study published in Science Translational Medicine has reported promising results for a potential new therapy that has yet to be tested in humans.The therapy, dubbed AMY109, is a long-acting antibody that was developed by researchers at the Translational Research Division of Chugai Pharmaceutical Company in Japan. The treatment works by binding to and blocking the signalling molecule interleukin-8 (IL-8), which plays a significant role in the body’s inflammatory response.
  • Exercise is even more effective than counselling or medication for depression. A recent study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine reviewed more than 1,000 research trials examining the effects of physical activity on depression, anxiety and psychological distress. It showed exercise is an effective way to treat mental health issues – and can be even more effective than medication or counselling.

Jobs on Board:

  • Kindly is looking for a Senior Brand Manager. Kindly is Asia’s only diagnostics-first platform for sexual care and performance health.
  • Newmi is looking for a Corporate Sales Manager – B2B Sales. Newmi is a Digital Health and Commerce platform and India’s first products and services ecosystem focused on the health and wellness needs of women.
  • Pee Safe is looking for a Graphic Design Intern. Pee Safe is the brand behind The Toilet Seat Sanitizer Spray.
  • Elda Health is looking for a Marketing and SEO Intern. Elda is a digital wellness platform for women.
  • CysterCare is looking for research interns. CysterCare is a one-stop shop for all PCOS problems.

Today’s newsletter is brought to you by Navneet Kaur and Jayant Pal Singh

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