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Virta Health, a San Francisco-based digital health startup that wants to "reverse Type 2 diabetes," has raised $37 million in venture capital funding. Backers include Venrock, Allen & Co.,Obvious Ventures, Redmile Group and Scifi VC. The company is led by Sami Iniken, founder of online real estate platform Trulia (now owned by Zillow).

Why it matters: Reversing diabetes without drugs or surgery is a pretty audacious goal, so points here for bold vision. And the company already has the public endorsement of a former chief scientific and medical officer of the American Diabetes Association. The basic idea is to obsessively monitor food intake, which Virta claims has proven effective in reversing (not managing) Type 2 in 87% of recent clinical trial patients. Yes, there will need to many many more clinical trials before this technology is proven out.

Bottom line: "Most people with the disease end up having to constantly monitor their blood sugar with the prick of a needle and diabetic pills or can "cure" it with bariatric surgery. However, type 2 diabetes (also know as adult onset diabetes) only affects those afflicted with it if their sugar levels go too high or too low. Thus, monitoring every carb you swallow is another measure in keeping the disease at bay." ― Sarah Buhr

Go deeper

Technical glitch in Facebook's ad tools creates political firestorm

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. Photo: SOPA Images / Contributor

Facebook said late Thursday that a mix of "technical problems" and confusion among advertisers around its new political ad ban rules, caused issues affecting ad campaigns of both parties.

Why it matters: A report out Thursday morning suggested the ad tools were causing campaign ads, even those that adhered to Facebook's new rules, to be paused. Very quickly, political campaigners began asserting the tech giant was enforcing policies in a way that was biased against their campaigns.

Updated 51 mins ago - Politics & Policy

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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Large coronavirus outbreaks leading to high death rates — Coronavirus cases are at an all-time high ahead of Election Day — U.S. tops 88,000 COVID-19 cases, setting new single-day record.
  2. Politics: States beg for Warp Speed billions.
  3. World: Taiwan reaches a record 200 days with no local coronavirus cases.
  4. 🎧Podcast: The vaccine race turns toward nationalism.
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States beg for Warp Speed billions

A COVID-19 drive-thru testing center yesterday at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens. Photo: David Santiago/Miami Herald via AP

Operation Warp Speed has an Achilles' heel: States need billions to distribute vaccines — and many say they don't have the cash.

Why it matters: The first emergency use authorization could come as soon as next month, but vaccines require funding for workers, shipping and handling, and for reserving spaces for vaccination sites.