Diet advice via gut bacteria coming soon to Israel’s largest healthcare provider

DayTwo startup signs deal with Clalit Health Services; patients will courier their stool to a lab and get personalized nutrition tips

Shoshanna Solomon is The Times of Israel's Startups and Business reporter

An illustration of the DayTwo app in action (Courtesy)
An illustration of the DayTwo app in action (Courtesy)

Israeli startup DayTwo, whose app provides customized nutrition recommendations based on an analysis of gut bacteria, has signed an agreement with Israel’s Clalit Health Services, the largest of the nation’s four healthcare providers, to cooperate in providing nutritional advice to its customers.

The accord marks the first time the startup, founded by billionaire entrepreneur Marius Nach, has gotten a nod from a healthcare provider for its technology.

The new service, which will be launched toward the end of the year, will be added to the nutritional services already offered by Clalit. Users of the service will get a home kit via which they will send a sample of their stool via courier to a lab in which their gut bacteria’s genetic profile will be analyzed. Patients will also fill out a medical questionnaire and provide blood test results.

Using a new app set up by Clalit and DayTwo, patients will get a personalized diet and meet online with a clinical dietitian who will provide them with nutritional guidelines based on the gut bacteria analysis. When necessary the information will be transferred automatically to the patient’s doctors.

Israeli startup’s DayTwo kit to analyze gut bacteria (Courtesy)

The price of the service will be announced shortly by Clalit, a statement said.

DayTwo was founded in 2015 by Nacht, who is also the founder of Israeli cybersecurity firm Check Point Software Technologies Ltd.; Yuval Ofek, DayTwo’s chairman; Lihi Segal, the CEO; and Yair Schindel, the managing partner.

The company’s technology is based on research developed at the Weizmann Institute of Science. The researchers genetically sequenced the DNA of all of the bacteria of the gut and then created multiple profiles of people based on their bacteria.

Their study showed that different people eating the same foods can have different sugar — or glycemic — responses, depending on the kind of gut bacteria they have. So, for example, two people with two different kinds of bacteria could have two completely different glycemic responses to eating something as simple as an apple.

DayTwo has raised $17 million to date from investors including Johnson & Johnson, the US-based Mayo Clinic, French fund Seventure Partners, and other private investors. In June, the company said that Israeli NBA player Omri Casspi also invested an undisclosed amount of money in the startup.

The Clalit venture could pave the way for the company to expand its services to US health providers as well, with the Mayo Clinic being the first likely entry point to the US market.

Clalit runs a network of 14 hospitals and some 1,300 primary care clinics throughout Israel, as well as a network of dental clinics and pharmacies.

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