Chicago-based metaMe Health, a startup focused on behavioral digital treatments gastrointestinal conditions, has raised $3.8 million in seed funding. LionBird Ventures led the round, which also saw contributions from Hemi Ventures and other unnamed backers.
WHAT THEY DO
The company’s lead product is Regulora, a treatment tackling the cognitive, behavioral and affective factors that can trigger irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Its behavior-based intervention is administered over a three-month period through seven automated sessions hosted on the company’s metaMe Connect mobile platform, which collects patients’ adherence data and reported outcomes. The company has conducted a pilot for Regulora, which was conducted with Northwestern Medicine, Stanford Health Care, Harvard Medical Center and others.
MetaMe’s development pipeline also includes digital health products for gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) with IBS overlap, although these have not yet reached a pilot phase.
WHAT IT’S FOR
The startup said that the seed funding will support continued development of Regulora, particularly through the initiation of a large, randomized controlled trial of IBS patients.
“We’re thrilled that all of the efforts and hard work of the metaMe Health team are beginning to produce tangible results,” metaMe Health CEO Tim Rudolphi said in a statement. “Closing on this initial round of seed funding provides further validation of metaMe’s efforts in developing an all-digital platform for the treatment of IBS.”
MetaMe isn’t the first to take a digital approach to gastrointestinal health. Berlin-based Cara Care, for instance, just raised a $7 million round in June for its symptom management app, while December saw Vivante Health’s digital program for digestive health bring in $6 million.
ON THE RECORD
“We’re excited to support the metaMe Health team in its mission to make clinically proven non-drug therapy accessible to the millions of people suffering from IBS,” Ed Michael, managing partner at LionBird, said in a statement. “We’re committed to investing in companies defying established norms within their industry, and we believe metaMe is doing that for IBS treatment.”