Global Health/ Deep Medicine: How to overcome the challenges of gathering women’s health data in diverse ethnic groups?
Collecting women’s health samples and data from various countries in the Middle East, South Asia, Africa, Latin America, etc. is challenging. The genetic data sets or biomarkers in GWAS are predominantly from European or Caucasian ancestry. What will it take to come up with a collaboration where academic research institutions and organizations join hands to gather the sample data which can help create new tools and tests to address women’s health needs especially in reproductive health or oncology and beyond. Does virtual care have a role to play here in diagnosing women’s health, especially in remote areas where routine check-ups are challenging or in communities where these topics are taboo? Are there lessons that have been learnt about virtual care during the pandemic that we can draw on?
How can mobile apps help in providing better support in women’s health?
This workshop will explore whether a mobile app could be helpful in providing reassurance, advice and reliable information for women. Many women’s health indications could benefit from providing continual support outside of regular check-ups and we would welcome a wider discussion on which areas could benefit from better digital health support. One example we are interested in is recurrent miscarriage and an app that could be tailored to the different stages of the cycle of hope, anxiety and grief that many women go through. We would also like to explore the use of apps in supporting women with potentially serious pregnancy conditions such as pre-eclampsia, which require careful monitoring and patient education to reduce risk. We will explore important app features, the potential for external device integration and the benefits and potential challenges of creating these apps.
What is the role of the vaginal microbiome in fertility and pregnancy outcomes?
Indigenous and probiotic lactobacilli express properties antagonistic to pathogens, but complementary to host immunity. These organisms are associated with conception, reducing the risk of infection, as well as potentially lowering the risk of a number of complications of pregnancy that otherwise lead to maternal and infant mortality and morbidity.
Where could a non-invasive diagnostic test for endometriosis fit in the medical journey of patients suffering from pain and/or infertility ?
More specifically, where would such a test provide the most useful information for the patient? Before or between imagery tests? What progress has been/can be made in identifying biomarkers of the two main symptoms of endometriosis, pain and infertility? How do we investigate diagnostic biomarkers when the endometriosis reference test, which associates a visualization of the lesions by laparoscopy followed by a histological confirmation, is imperfect and can miss positive patients?
Endometriosis is a chronic and disabling gynecological disease affecting 10% of women of reproductive age, representing 176 million patients in the world. The current gold standard for diagnosis of endometriosis is invasive surgical laparoscopy enabling the visualization of the lesions by the surgeon and confirmation by a pathologist. This diagnosis takes in average 7 years. There is no cure.
Endodiag is an IVD company dedicated to reshape the journey of endometriosis patients. The company is specialized in the development of non-invasive diagnostic tests and has built an international regulatory compliant biobank (EndoBiobank®) of more than 1000 human biological samples, including positive endometriosis patients and controls.
What is the future of molecular target discovery in ART? What are the best approaches & methods to produce reliable molecular targets for improving outcomes in ART (or in the wider Reproductive medicine and maternal health space)?
This is a very general question. We are engaged in drug discovery approaches for targeting improvements in assisted reproduction (amongst a much wider interest in reproductive medicine and maternal health), and would like to hear thoughts on appropriate approaches in this space.
Could a mobile application with psychosocial care features change the overall outcome for female IVF patients in terms of: a) Psychosocial wellbeing; b) Patient experience; c) IVF success rates?
What features should be included in a mobile application designed to improve psychosocial wellbeing for women undergoing IVF and what further research is required to better define the recommendations for optimal psychosocial care? Technology could offer fertility clinics a way to support their IVF patient’s psychosocial wellbeing. Evidence relating to the optimal management of psychosocial care for IVF patients has been mixed to date. However, guidelines are offered by both ESHRE and HFEA. There is an opportunity to leverage technology alongside in-clinic face-to-face support to better support patients. Fertility Circle has a technology solution to deliver this and is looking for research partners to study its effectiveness.
Cannabis & Women’s Health: Are the psychotropic effects of cannabis necessary when targeting physical, emotional and hormonal symptoms in women’s health disorders (menstrual pain, painful intercourse and endometriosis)?
Gynica is specializing in clinically-validated, cannabinoids-based products in the field of women’s health.
From ancient times, evidence suggests that medical cannabis has immense therapeutic potential in women’s health. The earliest references for its use can be found in ancient Mesopotamia, China, Persia, Israel, and Syria when women used it for menstrual pain, bloating, abnormal bleeding, menopausal symptoms, and urinary tract infections.
We would like to discuss the different implications of cannabis use, and specifically THC – its controversial psychotropic compound, for the treatment of women’s health conditions.
How can we make preeclampsia history within this decade?
Preeclampsia is a hypertensive pregnancy disorder killing a mother or a baby every minute. Professor Ahmed’s group has over 20 years of research in preeclampsia who has discovered and patented accurate diagnostic and tailored therapy. The question is proposed to discuss how to use our current scientific understanding to solve preeclampsia.
Using continuous measurement devices, what other areas in overall health would you investigate relating to measurable biometrics to tailor treatment of all health conditions in women?
If you were given a device that measured skin temp., heart rate (HR), HR variability, pulse oximetry, movement and oxygen saturation in women, what research would you do in Women’s health with this data?
Although Natural Cycles is focussed on contraception and pregnancy planning, once it has advanced in other areas of Women’s health, it aims to help women receive more tailored treatment for all health conditions unrelated to the reproductive system. We are currently testing a number of wearable devices on the market that measure a combination of biometrics for use with the product but with the possibility on collecting data and contributing to overall Women’s health research.
What would an ideal intrauterine device for developing countries look like and what other indications could be possible with the Intrauterine Ball Platform Technology specifically looking at the developing world?
OCON Healthcare is a women’s health company that created the world’s first and only three-dimensional (3D) spherical copper intrauterine device (IUD) made from Nitinol, a super elastic alloy that can retain shape and is an ideal transporter of drugs to the uterus to treat various health conditions. The company develops, manufactures, and globally commercializes IUDs that are designed based on its proprietary Intra Uterine Ball (IUB™) platform, a novel technology that enables the development of technologically superior IUDs to address a myriad of women’s health issues. What would an ideal intrauterine device for developing countries look like? In which settings are IUDs currently inserted? Safety concerns and risks (malposition / perforation / ectopic pregnancy) and the difference of risk developed world vs. developing world (where ectopic pregnancies have high fatality rates). Self-Removal of IUDs in the developing world: What are possible obstacles/advantages? What studies have been / can be done? Other factors affecting IUD adoption rates (hormonal and non-hormonal)?
Artificial Intelligence (AI) within Women’s Health technology – At what level do you stop automation in healthcare apps and engage a human decision?
What is the best research strategy to discover the critical factors and or conditions for successful embryo implantation?
Why does a good looking blastocyst often fail to deliver a healthy pregnancy in Assisted Reproduction procedures? The understanding of embryo endometrium interaction is limited and sometimes referred to as a black box. Improved understanding of the factors driving the implantation could be important to help patients suffering from recurrent implantation failure and or recurrent pregnancy loss.
What is the best way to combine digital phenotypic patient reported data with multiomic datasets (genomic, proteomic, hormonal) for Chronic Gynaecological Conditions like, Endometriosis and PCOS?
Syrona Health is collecting digital phenotypic patient-reported data through its flagship app ’SORA’ designed for those with Chronic Gynae Conditions.
How do you design a clinical trial for diagnostic utility of an app to triage high risk endometriosis patients, given that Endometriosis can only be confirmed through a laparoscopic surgery? (Session chair: Dr Martin Hirsch)
How do you design a clinical trial for diagnostic utility of an app to triage high-risk endometriosis patients, given that Endometriosis can only be confirmed through a laparoscopic surgery? More generally how do you design a trial to validate a digital health technology?