October 19, 2021

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Chinese health management startup releases ‘smart’ toilet seat

BEIJING — Geometry Healthcare, a Chinese startup conducting research and development on a health management system using big data, released a “smart” toilet seat in August that lets users keep tabs on their health.

Its app-linked Synsol toilet seat is its first mass-produced product. The device allows the company to provide health management advice through biochips and special algorithms, which continuously monitor about 30 “biomarkers,” or measurable body characteristics.

Bioelectric measurement also makes it possible to assess user health and prepare personalized disease-prevention programs.

Geometry’s laboratory has so far completed tests on more than 100 biomarkers. The biochips used in Synsol combine a number of testing technologies such as dry chemistry, electrochemistry and immunoassay.

Chen Liangcheng, Geometry Healthcare’s founder, explained how effective Synsol’s automatic urine testing is in terms of health management. “Urine is one of the important metabolites for the human body,” Chen said. “It contains many substances that testing can focus on, making it possible to meticulously check health through regular tests.”

Chen also pointed out that urine tests are easy compared to blood tests. “Automated urine testing technology integrated with the smart toilet seat makes it possible for users to easily manage their health over the long term,” Chen said.

But collection of urine samples is just the first step. “What is important is follow-up analysis, processing and personalized health guidance for users,” Chen said, noting that the smart toilet seat with built-in biochips is “just a sensor.”

“Our goal is to build a health management platform based on human body data and create a closed-loop system of disease prevention and control,” he said.

Synsol can be shared by family members, as users are identified through an app or remote control, with each having their own health file. Geometry is also developing various types of testing chips that cater to different needs, along with health management programs. Based on a user’s health goals, the app can provide customized plans using data gleaned from tests.

Geometry Healthcare’s app offers a number of health management programs, including ones for testing, nutrition and psychological stability, as well as one for easing urination.

According to Sun Mulie, a Geometry executive in charge of software development, the company will develop health programs from various aspects, such as physiology, psychology and general wellness, to provide individual health guidance, including nutrition and exercise regimens.

Incidence rates and death rates of chronic diseases are high in China, while information about the diseases and their treatment remains low.

According to the latest medical statistics, the awareness and treatment rates of high blood pressure in China stood at 46.9% and 40.7%, respectively, in 2019. The rates for diabetes stood at only 36.5% and 32.3%.

As China’s population ages and health risks increase, regular medical checkups and early screening tests become more important. Under such circumstances, the demand for convenient and efficient health-risk prevention measures is growing.

Geometry Healthcare plans to partner with functional food and health supplement brands in the future to allow consumers to benefit from the combination of physiological and biochemical testing, professional consulting services and customized nutrition.

The company also plans to launch point-of-care testing, or POCT, and household products, such as a smart mirror that checks skin condition and a smart toothbrush that measures the concentration of uric acid in saliva.

36Kr, a Chinese tech news portal founded in Beijing in 2010, has more than 150 million readers worldwide. Nikkei announced a partnership with 36Kr on May 22, 2019.

For the Japanese version of this story, click here.

For the Chinese version, click here.

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