The test, which can be taken around the sixth month of pregnancy, could signal the likelihood of a premature birth
Spotted: Stephen Quake, a researcher at Stanford, has developed a blood test that may be able to predict if a baby will be born prematurely. Quake and his team studied RNA molecules in the blood of pregnant women at risk for premature birth and found seven genes whose changing activity appeared to signal a premature birth. Quake’s own daughter was born a month early, inspiring him to develop the test.
The test, which can be taken around the sixth month of pregnancy, may offer a cheap and fast way to predict the risk of premature births. Quake has launched a startup called Mirvie to commercialise the technology. To date, he has raised nearly €9 million from investors, including Khosla Ventures of Menlo Park, California.
Springwise has spotted other innovations aimed at making pregnancy safer, including an AI tool for predicting the likelihood of IVF success and a taxi service dedicated to taking pregnant women to the hospital.