YourChoice Therapeutics is developing unisex, non-hormonal birth control

The options available to women who want to avoid getting pregnant today are bad. Most, like the widely used birth control pill, feed man-made estrogen and progestin hormones to women, which are capable of causing a number of awful side effects. YourChoice Therapeutics — a startup launched by a team of Berkeley researchers, including two experts in sperm physiology and sperm-egg interactions — dreams of producing a unisex, non-hormonal alternative to existing contraceptives. The company has raised $400,000 in funding to date, plus a $150,000 check from Y Combinator. YourChoice will make its big pitch at Y Combinator Demo Days next week. It’s seeking $2 million in venture capital funding to continue research on its sperm cell-targeting novel method of …

Natural Cycles contraception app told to clarify pregnancy risks

A multi-month investigation by Sweden’s Medical Products Agency into a number of unwanted pregnancies among users of ‘digital contraception’ app Natural Cycles has been closed after the startup agreed to clarify the risk of the product failing. But, on the self-reported data front, the agency said it was satisfied the number of unwanted pregnancies is in line with Natural Cycles’ own clinical evaluations which are included in the certification documentation for the product. In its marketing and on its website Natural Cycles describes the app-based system as “93% effective under typical use” — a finding that’s based on a clinical study it conducted of more than 22,000 of its users. The investigation by Sweden’s MPA began around eight months ago, after a …

Its a new era for fertility tech

Women’s health has long been devoid of technological innovation, but when it comes to fertility options, that’s starting to change. Startups in the space are securing hundreds of millions in venture capital investment, a significant increase to the dearth of funding collected in previous years. Fertility entrepreneurs are focused on a growing market: couples are choosing to reproduce later in life, an increasing number of female breadwinners are able to make their own decisions about when and how to reproduce, and overall, around 10% of women in the US today have trouble conceiving, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Startups, as a result, are working to improve various pain points in a women’s fertility journey, whether that …

Don’t fall for this bogus Twitter thread about ‘natural birth control’

A Twitter post going viral Tuesday proves yet again that you can’t always believe everything you read online. Infographics posted by Twitter user Bria Badu, aka@MissBriaJanay, claim without evidence that “natural birth control options” like eating papayas and figs can keep you from getting pregnant. Botanists and doctors said the information in the graphics is completely bogus, but that hasn’t stopped the tweet from accumulating nearly 17,000 likes and 6,500 retweets. https://twitter.com/MissBriaJanay/status/1136255972098420736 Worse still, the infographics appear to be plagiarizedfrom a site called Home Remedy Hacks, which boasts several other dubious “hacks” like home remedies for ovarian cysts and gonorrhea. The original article, 22 Effective Home Remedies for Birth Control, cites zero sources to support its claims, save for a …