When cancer in a patient is suspected, the first line of investigation in most cases is to perform a biopsy, sticking a long needle into the area in question again and again, or punching through the patient’s hip bone in order to extract material for testing. In endoscopic biopsies, a tube is inserted into the body of a patient under anesthesia, to extract material for testing. Analysis of the results takes up to several days and costs thousands of Euros to complete. And, although these are relatively routine procedures, complications take place in as many as 30% of conventional biopsies.
Creating An Incentive Scheme For Longevity
The respective diagnostic procedure for cardiovascular disease isn’t much more appealing. If the patient is lucky, she’ll have a chest X-Ray, CT, MRI, echocardiogram, or ECG in the hospital. But she might require a cardiac catheter, i.e. a tube is inserted into an artery in her groin and navigated up toward her heart, in order to flush in a dye that allows X-Ray technicians to get a better look at her heart valves and arteries. This again will cost several thousand Euros.
Unfortunately, for many other common causes of death like stroke and Alzheimer’s disease, there is simply no effective means of accurate early diagnosis. But a range of new diagnostic methods is beginning to challenge these invasive, expensive, or even non-existent methods. When they are fully developed to scale, these methods will be highly effective and highly affordable.
DIY Health Diagnostics
All the data you need to achieve your optimal healthspan is already inside us – in our blood, in our DNA, and in our habits. Unlike our DNA, which reveals our body’s predispositions, but doesn’t change, our blood is dynamic: it reveals how our body changes over time, in response to our diet, exercise, or lifestyle. Your daily habits reveal how you live.
Most of us have a digital thermometer, a (body-fat) scale, or a blood pressure gauge at home – those of us already own some basic household diagnostic technology. You are probably familiar with so-called wearables; i.e. wearable health devices like chest strap heart monitors for jogging enthusiasts, or smartwatches, s.a. Apple Watch, or Fitbit, or the Oura ring, which monitors your heart rate, sleep quality, and other personal health metrics. There are home blood tests that monitor your cholesterol and blood glucose, and even home tests that help diagnose STDs, allergies, and food intolerances.
Numerous apps leverage your phone’s camera, gyroscope, GPS, and other sensors to provide you with real-time monitoring of relevant organism-related data. Do-It-Yourself DIY health diagnostic devices like these are becoming increasingly wearable, portable, even implantable, ingestible, and – most relevant affordable for individuals. Similar to the development in computer hardware, the latest wearables are equipped with much more computing power than many giant medical devices in hospitals. Besides their general computing performance, they are also adding more and more functionality: Apple Watch now includes blood oxygen level readings and an electrocardiogram (ECG) monitoring function, to help detect atrial fibrillation, the most common heart rhythm disorder.
DIY health diagnostic devices are – like small portable computers in the 1990s – on their way to replace incumbent medical technology that requires trained experts and maintenance. In 2022, companies like Apple will launch their Augmented Reality (AR) devices that might be transformed into de facto Brain-Computer Interfaces (BCI), running a real-time computation on brain signals.
Another kind of wearables that is available in basic versions is the so-called ‚smart clothing‘. More elaborate products with improved functionality, s.a. artificial skin should become available soon.
Providing A Continuous, Personalised, Realtime Data Flow
Working with data collected by DIY health diagnostic devices will prove to be the ultimate way for health diagnostics in general. As soon as the collected data are of the same or similar quality as data collected with medical technology devices in hospitals or medical offices, the health sector, and overall individuals’ health, will experience a paradigm shift: having personalized health data at hand, real-time, allows for much better early diagnosis.
And what‘s good for early diagnosis adds perfectly to an individual‘s personal omics, i.e. the holistic molecular, physiological, and environmental profile over time. The analysis of a combination of our blood, DNA, and habitual data is the basis to achieve longevity. Bridging genome and dynamic physiology, detecting diseases at an early stage, and uncovering lifestyles and environmental patterns associated with a (potential / future) disease, is the goal of the NOMIX team.
Validated personal omics and biomarkers of aging would allow for testing medical interventions to extend lifespan (and healthspan because changes in the biomarkers would be observable throughout the lifespan of the organism. The uses for personal omics and biomarkers of aging are ubiquitous and identifying a physical parameter of biological aging would allow humans to determine our true age, mortality, and morbidity.
Since the change in the physical biomarkers should be proportional to the change in the age of the species, humans will be able to dive into research on extending life- and health spans and finding timelines for the arise of potential genetic disease, based on an AI-powered system that allows for a continuous flow of real-life personal omics data.
By creating CODIS, the Collective Digital Immune System for Longevity, NOMIX will allow for an unprecedented leap in research and applied biotechnology, improving the overall quality of life, bringing us a much faster good deal closer to longevity, and a 3P-Medicine (preventive, personalized, precision) approach that is not limited to the more prosperous parts of the population.
Slow aging, optimize your healthspan: Join the NOMIX Longevity movement!