Diagnostics can be used to support "wellness" and to make lifestyle decisions, taking them into the realm of consumer health. This market has been around for a long time--for example, the earliest reported urine-based pregnancy test was from ancient Egypt, with the results based on the growth of wheat and barley seeds, though home pregnancy tests had to wait until the 1970s. Wellness diagnostics are a growing market ranging from fertility and infertility through to stress tests for the busy executive.
IPRO Interactive began by developing saliva-based stress tests for athletes. The advantages of saliva are that its collection is noninvasive, painless and convenient, requiring no medical supervision and carrying no risk of infection, and IPRO's technology means that it can monitor analytes in real time.
IPRO's tests are now also used in the corporate world to assess the health and well-being of individuals by measuring biomarkers such as cortisol, testosterone, and secretory IgA. These can indicate changes in the immune and other systems relating to physical and mental stress and sleep problems.
According to the company, being able to monitor people in real time helps physicians to work out the causative factors behind sleep disorders and symptoms of stress. Knowing these factors can help employees handle stress better and therefore function more effectively at work.