The old adage says something like, “You can buy anything with enough money, except good health and more years.” Tally Health, a new company, plans to change that. The New York City-based biotech firm intends to make a profit from delaying the effects of aging by providing individualized recommendations to improve health and, potentially, extend life expectancy.
The company, which was incubated by Kirsten Green’s Forerunner Ventures and L Catterton, had a 270,000-strong waitlist before launching in February and announced $10 million in venture funding on Thursday. John Legend, Chrissy Teigen, Pedro Pascal, and Zac Efron are just some of the A-listers that have invested. Green is the newest member of the Tally board of directors.
Tally Health was created by David Sinclair, a Harvard researcher on aging, and Whitney Casey, a venture financier. In a study published in Cell, Sinclair, and colleagues demonstrated that they could slow down the aging process in mice. DNA methylation, or the addition of a molecule to DNA known as a “methyl group,” affects the expression of DNA in a cell and, hence, aging, he realized.
Melanie Goldey, CEO of Tally Health, states, “The research shows that aging can be treated and longevity and health span can be increased.”
A Cheek Swab to Determine Age
There are three mainstays of Tally Health’s longevity platform. A cheek swab can be used to determine one’s age. A client’s biological age, which may differ from their chronological age, can be determined by sending a cheek swab to Tally’s lab for analysis.
After collecting test results and information about the client’s nutrition, exercise routine, and mental health, Tally’s platform generates customized recommendations. If a user doesn’t want to give up wine with dinner, for example, the platform will present alternative options so they can still make the desired changes. In addition to its lifestyle suggestions, Tally offers a daily supplement with five substances that aim to counteract the signs of aging. The most significant component, according to Goldey, is the shift in way of life.
Clients can take the aging test every three months to see how the supplement and changes in their habits have affected their health. One test, one month of supplements, and personalized suggestions from Tally Health cost $199 per month. The company also has plans that cost $159 per month for six months or $129 per month for a year-long subscription. These plans are an option for expensive anti-aging clinics. Tally wouldn’t say how many tests it has taken since it opened, but it says it has thousands of users.
According to Goldey
The company’s beta trial, which started last June, included DNA methylation data from 8,000 people aged 18 to 100, split evenly between the sexes and included 30% persons of color. After Tally’s initial debut, several testers upgraded to paying members, and they’ve recently gotten their second assessment.
Goldey claims that aging affects everyone. “We want to take a personalized approach that ensures people continue to enjoy good health and the best possible longevity,” the authors write.