February 19, 2024

Young at heart — but how old is your body? This startup has raised $4.2m to help you find out

Longevity startup GlycanAge has raised another round of funding and is attracting Hollywood customers

Zosia Wanat

3 min read

UK longevity startup GlycanAge has raised a $4.2m seed round to scale its business that lets users learn their biological age. The round was led by Bulgarian LAUNCHub Ventures and UK-based deeptech fund Kadmos Capital.

GlycanAge already has a big name associated with it — Hollywood star Halle Berry is one of its customers — and the raise marks the latest show of support for companies working in the longevity sector. Spotify founder Daniel Ek, for example, is building futuristic body-scanning devices and billionaire investors in Europe are extolling the benefits of using diabetes drugs to stay young.

What does GlycanAge do? 

The startup’s technology aims to tell users how much their bodies have actually aged, despite what the calendar might say. It then suggests what that means for our health and how we can slow down the ageing process.  


Measuring biological ages is already popular in the US, thanks to startups like Tally Health, InsideTracker and Novos. 

Unlike its American competitors, which focus on genes and DNA, GlycanAge is the only company that measures users’ biological age with biomarkers for glycans — complex carbohydrate molecules and one of the primary components of our bodies’ cells. The company says that glycobiology can help with predicting diseases, guiding interventions and tailoring therapies.

In practical terms, the startup provides users — mostly rich tech bros, celebrities and longevity research laboratories — with a finger prick test kit sent directly to their home. 

Once the sample is collected it is sent back to GlycanAge, where it undergoes multiple tests in the laboratory for about three weeks. GlycanAge scientists can then assess biomarkers that indicate the level of damage in the user’s body caused by their lifestyle and the environment  — and estimate their biological age. 

The user will also receive various indexes related to their age — such as cardio health and gut health — to identify potential risks and areas for improvement.  

The GlycanAge team also offers users individual consultation with a specialist who suggests how they could slow down their ageing process. One-off treatment costs £289.

GlycanAge ships worldwide and works with individual customers and clinics across more than 60 countries. It’s headquartered in Newcastle upon Tyne in the UK but its laboratory is located in Zagreb, Croatia — where both of its founders come from. Zagreb also plays host to the biggest glycobiology lab in the world. The company employs 40 people. 

Where will the funding go? 

With the fresh money, GlycanAge wants to shift away from the longevity space to the broader diagnostics market, aiming to develop disease-specific tests that catch illnesses early. It’ll use the money to establish a regulatory strategy and develop concrete products.

Zosia Wanat

Zosia Wanat is a senior reporter at Sifted. She covers the CEE region and policy. Follow her on X and LinkedIn