Nix personal hydration monitor in development

 Dehydrated runner resting with music after training.

Dehydrated runner resting with music after training.

Nix will soon release it's sweat-based biometric hydration sensor

Nix Inc., a Harvard Innovation Launch Lab company has developed a single-use biosensor for personalized, real-time hydration monitoring.  The sweat-based biometric sensor can reportedly monitor hydration levels for athletes, soldiers, and laborers or anyone whose hydration is critical to their performance.

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Nix whose goal is to take the guess work out of hydration, claims athletes regularly compromise both their safety and performance as a result of dehydration.  Over and under hydration conditions are equally damaging.  Reports suggest that up to 80% of amateur marathoners cross the finish line mildly dehydrated causing a 29% performance impairment.

If properly diagnosed, medical practitioners believe these kinds of deleterious effects are 100% preventable.  This is the market that Nix is looking to quench by informing athletes and labors alike, when to drink, what to drink and how much to drink.

Sweat works by carrying the heat generated by your body to the skin's surface, where it evaporates, lowering your overall internal temperature. While sweating is an absolute necessity for preventing overheating, excessive fluid loss through sweating can degrade your performance and acute dehydration can have severe medical consequences.

New research highlights that drinking to follow a personalized hydration plan leads to better performance and is superior to drinking based on thirst, which some experts say is not a reliable indicator of dehydration.

Noting that everyone has a different sweat rate and body composition, Nix hopes to expand the concept of so called hydration strategy by providing individual real time hydration monitoring.

Studies show that body weight, fitness and fat percentages are only some of the factors effecting personal thermoregulation.  Before hydration monitors such as nix, athletes could only develop a hydration strategy through experiences and with simple tests like body weight readings before and after exercise to estimate fluid loss.

The biosensors wearable patch from Nix, incorporates a number of Harvard patents in materials science and biosensor technology to detect chemical biomarker changes in a persons sweat, identifying changes as they occur during periods of rehydration and subsequent dehydration.

The patch-based sensor discreetly attaches to a patients body as a stand-alone sensor - no phone, device or app needed for analyzing results. Rather the lightweight sensor monitors changes in hydration levels in realtime during physical activity.  Reading and hydration levels can be read right off the 1.75” diameter face of the sensor.  Indicators include current hydration status, baseline readings, electrolyte indictor, and water indicators.  The single use patch has a release liner for easy removal.

picture of Nix tactical sweat monitor application
picture of Nix tactical sweat monitor application

Future product developments reportedly include expanding beyond the Nix Solo patch, to a Nix Sync Connected Sensor for sports team applications to alert coaches of various athletes hydrations responses and ultimately a Nix Tactical offering predictive analytics to evaluate how  current temperatures, humidity levels winds speeds etc will affect performance and profile optimal hydration strategy.

Retail release date and prices of the Nix Solo have not been announced.  Industry analysts however, estimate that retail prices will likely be between $4 - $6 per sensor and will be sold through a mix of specialty retailers like running stores, e-commerce sites and big box retailers like Dick’s Sporting Goods.

There is no sweating the small stuff here as hydration monitoring has become big business.  GraphWear Technologies beta tested it’s SweatSmart device with an NFL team.  The SweatSmart device is made from graphene, and is a product of a University innovations lab at the Penn University.  iHydrate looks to crack the market with their app based program.

With a competitive sweat-scape heating up, Nix hopes distance runners will identify with easy to read and disposability of their sensors as a key differentiator.  Early product testers and adopters include four-time Olympian Shalane Flanagan, world record marathoner Paula Radcliffe.

Of the close to 90 million of people who take part in running events each year, nearly 18 million of them reportedly regularly race in one or more race each year of distances ranging from 5 kilometers up to ultra marathons (over 26.2 miles).

With a market that hot, Nix is likely to quench the thirst of a growing throng of avid amateur athletes looking to maximize performance through an optimal hydration strategy.  You can find more information on Nix and future product announcements from their website (http://nixbiosensors.com).

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