How These 63 Curated Biomarkers Supercharge Your Health

Mito Health's Flagship Package offers a comprehensive screening of 63 biomarkers, covering various aspects such as heart health, metabolic and nutritional markers, liver function, immunity, and cancer detection. Learn what each of these biomarkers mean for your health.

Mito Health's Flagship Package encompasses screening of your whole body across 63 biomarkers: heart, metabolic, nutritional, liver, immunity, muscular and skeletal, hormonal, reproductive, kidney, and cancer detection.

But deciphering the many biomarkers and what they mean can be overwhelming, especially when you are pressed for time. Fear not - here is a rundown of all 63 biomarkers and an understanding of exactly how they impact your health.

Heart Health

1. Lipoprotein (a)

Lipoprotein(a) or Lp(a) is particularly dangerous sub-type of atherogenic particle with an additional protein, apolipoprotein(a), attached. Higher levels of Lp(a) have been strongly linked to cardiovascular disease and heart valve disease, even when LDL-cholesterol (traditionally the “bad” cholesterol) is low.

Lp(a) levels are largely genetically determined (80-90%) and are elevated in about 20% of the population. As this is mainly controlled by genes, there is no need at this point for most people to do this test more than once.

2. Apolipoprotein B (Apo B)

ApoB is a protein that is found on all the cholesterol-carrying particles in your blood that are responsible for narrowing/blockage of blood vessels (AKA atherogenic). LDL particles are the most common type of these particles, others include VLDL, IDL and Lp(a).

ApoB testing measures the number of all atherogenic particles while LDL-cholesterol testing measures the amount of cholesterol inside only the LDL particles, which has been shown to be a more consistent predictor of atherosclerosis, heart attack and stroke.

3. Low-density lipoprotein (LDL) Cholesterol

LDL-cholesterol tests measure the amount of cholesterol carried inside our LDL particles that transport cholesterol and fatty acids around our body. It is used in existing risk prediction guidelines for heart attack and stroke.

However, studies suggest that this reading should be interpreted together with Apolipoprotein B levels (particle number) to get a full picture of one’s risk of cardiovascular disease.

4. Triglycerides

Triglycerides (TG) are the most common type of fat in our body, serving as the main store of excess energy.

This test measures the amount of TG being transported around your body in the blood (not the amount in fat stores) within particles called lipoproteins. Very high levels TG can cause immediate problems like pancreatic damage.

5. High-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol

High-density lipoproteins are smaller, denser lipoproteins that serve mainly to transport cholesterol back from the body to the liver for breakdown and removal.

HDL-cholesterol is commonly referred to us “good” cholesterol as studies have observed that individuals with higher levels of HDL have lower incidence of cardiovascular disease. However, having higher levels of HDL does not eliminate or negate the risk associated with high apolipoprotein B or LDL-cholesterol.

6. Total Cholesterol

Total cholesterol represents the concentration of cholesterol in all cholesterol-carrying particles in our blood. This includes the cholesterol carried in both atherogenic and non-atherogenic particles.

Too much cholesterol in the atherogenic particles can increase the risk of disease, but cholesterol itself is not inherently bad, and is an essential part of every cell in our body.

7. High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP)

High sensitivity C-Reactive Protein (hsCRP) is a biomarker of inflammation throughout the body. Inflammation is our body’s natural response to protect itself from injury, infection or harmful substances and is required in appropriate amounts for survival.

While short term elevations can be normal, or even beneficial after intense exercise, chronically elevated inflammatory markers are associated with poor cardiovascular health and can be a sign of multiple diseases and ageing.

8. Total Cholesterol/HDL Ratio

The Total Cholesterol/HDL Ratio is assesses the balance between total cholesterol and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol in our blood, giving valuable insights into the overall cholesterol profile, helping to evaluate the potential cardiovascular risk associated with the balance of cholesterol types in the blood.

A lower Total Cholesterol/HDL Ratio is generally considered favorable, indicating a healthier balance between total cholesterol and the protective HDL cholesterol.

9. Triglyceride/HDL Ratio

The Triglyceride/HDL Ratio is a significant marker in cardiovascular health assessment, providing insights into the balance between triglycerides and high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol in the blood.

This ratio serves as an important indicator, with a lower value generally associated with a more favorable lipid profile. Elevated triglyceride levels and an unfavorable Triglyceride/HDL Ratio are linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular issues.

Metabolic and Nutritional

10. Insulin and HOMA-IR

Insulin is the main (but not the only) hormone used by your body to regulate glucose levels. Even if your glucose levels are normal, if your paired insulin test levels using HOMA-IR (Homeostatic Model Assessment of Insulin Resistance) are higher than expected, this means you are likely insulin resistant - your body needs more insulin to maintain a normal glucose level than a healthy person.

Insulin resistance can often be picked up even before glucose levels increase and is an early biomarker for metabolic problems, even before pre-diabetes develops.

11. Glucose

Glucose is one of the primary fuel sources of our body. Your glucose levels are tightly controlled by your body and if elevated when fasting, show that your body may be having difficulty keeping levels within the normal range.

This is seen in pre-diabetics (5.6-6.9mmol/L) and diabetics (>7.0mmol/L). Some degree of fluctuations in response to different types and amount of food, activity and illness are expected, but too much variation is not optimal.

12. Hemoglobin A1C (HbA1c)

Hemoglobin A1C (HbA1c) reflects an approximate average of your blood glucose levels over the past 3 months. Glucose in the blood can bind to hemoglobin in our red bloods cells (that survive for about 3 months) and HbA1c measures this concentration of glucose-bound hemoglobin.

13. Uric Acid

Uric acid is a waste product of nitrogen-containing purines in the body. High uric acid levels are typically associated with gout, but less well known to many are its associations with high blood pressure, metabolic disorders and cardiovascular disease.

14. Homocysteine

Homocysteine is an amino-acid produced by our body that is important in many processes. High levels signify problems in metabolic pathways and are associated with multiple diseases including cardiovascular disease, kidney disease, cognitive decline and neurological disorders.

15. Vitamin B12

Vitamin B12 (cobalamin) is an essential vitamin found only in our diet, mainly in animal products, and is required for DNA and fatty acid synthesis as well as nerve health. Optimal B12 levels are required to maintain blood and nerve health.

16. Folate

Folic acid, also known as vitamin B9, is a essential vitamin required for DNA and RNA synthesis. It is essential for the maturation of red blood cells and is found primarily in green leafy vegetables, fruits, and certain organ meats like liver. Abnormal folate levels can affect blood, cognitive and mental health.

17. Magnesium

Magnesium has numerous functions in the human body and is required for more than 300 enzymatic reactions.

Having optimal magnesium levels has been shown to have beneficial effects in various health conditions including diabetes, osteoporosis, bronchial asthma, preeclampsia, migraine, and cardiovascular diseases.

18. Iron

This is a measure of the amount of iron in your blood. Iron is an essential mineral that is a part of hemoglobin, a protein in your red blood cells that carries oxygen from your lungs to the rest of your body as well as numerous other processes in the body.

19. Total Iron Binding Capacity (TIBC)

Total iron-binding capacity (TIBC) is an essential test used for the diagnosis of iron deficiency anemias and other disorders of iron metabolism. Iron binding capacity is the capacity of transferrin to bind with iron.

A high TIBC can be a sign of iron deficiency (as your body can try to make more transferrin to increase iron transport).

20. Iron Saturation

Also known as transferrin saturation, this is the percentage of your transferrin that is carrying iron, which is the iron that is readily available for transport to tissues. A low percentage may indicate iron deficiency.

21. Ferritin

Ferritin is a type of protein that most of our bodies’ iron is bound to. Ferritin can thus be used as a marker for your body’s iron stores. However, in the presence of inflammation, ferritin levels often increase higher levels are associated with higher incidence of cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

Liver

22. Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT)

ALT is an enzyme found mainly in the liver cells but also in smaller amounts in the kidneys, heart, and muscles. When the liver is damaged, ALT can be released into the bloodstream.

Thus, elevated ALT levels are often an indication of liver damage, which now is most commonly due to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, though it is also elevated in conditions such as infection and alcoholic liver disease.

23. Aspartate Aminotransferase (AST)

AST is an enzyme that is found in several parts of the body, but primarily in the liver. AST is released into the bloodstream when there is damage to the liver and is a biomarker of mitochondrial dysfunction in the liver. This is classically caused by alcoholic liver disease and liver inflammation due to numerous causes.

24. Gamma-glutamyl transferase (GGT)

GGT is an enzyme found in many organs, but mostly in the liver. It is a marker of reduced drainage of bile from the liver out into the intestines.

Increased GGT has also been linked with depletions of your bodies own antioxidants (in particular glutathione), alcohol consumption as well as multitude of diseases and conditions, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes and metabolic syndrome.

25. Alkaline phosphatase (ALP)

ALP is an enzyme present in multiple tissue types, mainly the liver, kidney, bone and intestine (and placenta in mothers).

Most of the ALP measured in the blood comes from the liver and bone and vary with age in normal individuals. Disorders of the liver, bile ducts and bone can result in abnormal results.

26. Total protein

This is a measure of the amount of proteins circulating in the blood, which does not reflect the rest of the protein in our tissues throughout the body. Abnormal total protein levels often reflect issues of the kidneys, liver, and digestion.

27. Albumin

Albumin is a protein made by the liver that functions to maintain osmotic pressure and fluid balance, as well as transports numerous hormones, vitamins and enzymes around the body. Abnormal levels can indicate poor nutrition or nutrition absorption, liver or kidney diseases amongst others.

28. Globulin

A group of proteins typically produced in the liver that play an important role in fighting infections and transporting nutrients. High or low levels may indicate liver disease, immune disorders, or nutritional problems.

29. A/G ratio

The albumin/globulin ratio compares the concentrations of 2 abundant proteins in our blood, albumin and globulin. There is typically more albumin than globulin in our circulation and imbalances may signify liver issues and inflammation.

30. Total bilirubin

A waste product from the breakdown of red blood cells that is secreted in the bile, measurements can inform us of disorders of the liver and biliary system as well as with abnormal breakdown of blood cells.

Immunity

7. High-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP)

High sensitivity C-Reactive Protein (hsCRP) is a biomarker of inflammation throughout the body. Inflammation is our body’s natural response to protect itself from injury, infection or harmful substances and is required in appropriate amounts for survival.

While short term elevations can be normal, or even beneficial after intense exercise, chronically elevated inflammatory markers are associated with poor cardiovascular health and can be a sign of multiple diseases and ageing.

31. White blood cell count

White blood cells (WBCs) are key fighters of our immune system and protect your body from infection and damage. They respond to injury or illness by attacking infectious pathogens and stimulate healing through your body's normal inflammation response.

White cell counts can fluctuate in response to numerous things, including infections (whether minor or major) or recent illness and should be interpreted together with long term trends (eg persistently high or low) and with clinical symptoms, if present.

32. Neutrophils

Neutrophils are our bodies' most abundant type of white blood cell. Neutrophils are among the first cell types that are activated in the immune response, and play a large role in acute inflammation.

Consequently, neutrophil levels on tests may fluctuate greatly in response to day to day insults to our body. Extremely low or high levels are often seen in infections or inflammatory diseases and conditions that affect production in the bone marrow.

33. Lymphocytes

Lymphocytes are an important group of white blood cells that are key for our bodies' adaptive immune response - how our body recognises and remembers foreign invaders so that future immune responses are faster and more effective. They include different types such as B cells, T cells and natural killer (NK) cells.

34. Monocytes

Monocytes are a type of large white blood cell that recognise and alert our system of the presence of invading infections and thereafter engulf (phagocytose) foreign particles and infected or damaged cells to remove them from your body.

35. Basophils

Basophils are a type of white blood cell and are part of our bodies allergic response when exposed to foreign particles or allergens. Basophils release histamine which is the main driver of itchy and swollen skin, runny nose and watery eyes in allergic reactions.

36. Eosinophils

Eosinophils are a type of white blood cell most often activated in response to allergic reactions and (less commonly in developed countries) parasitic infections. They are most often mildly abnormal in allergy-linked diseases such as sinusitis and asthma, but markedly elevated levels can be seen in rarer, more serious conditions.

37. Erythrocyte Sedimentation Rate (ESR)

ESR is a non-specific test measuring the levels of inflammation in the body. It can be elevated in a wide range of conditions, including immune diseases, infections or event tumours. While not specific to any single type of disease, ESR is useful when interpreted in conjunction with other tests.

38. Rheumatoid factor (RF)

Rheumatoid factor antibodies are produced by our own immune system that incorrectly target our own body, this is known as autoimmunity.

Levels can be elevated in autoimmune disorders like rheumatoid arthritis or Sjögren’s syndrome for example, but also in some non-autoimmune conditions where there is long-standing inflammation.

Muscular and Skeletal

39. Calcium

Calcium is an essential element for proper cardiac function, the structural integrity of bone, and muscular contraction. It also acts as a signalling molecule in many biological processes.

More than 99% of the calcium in the body is stored in bone. Calcium is tightly regulated by the multiple hormones including vitamin D and parathyroid hormone.

40. Phosphate

Phosphate is an essential electrolyte which is found primarily in our bones and teeth but also in the rest of our cells in smaller amounts. It is regulated by multiple hormones, our gut and our kidneys and contributes to the function of bones and numerous cellular functions.

41. Vitamin D

Vitamin D3 is made by the skin when exposed to sunlight and can be found otherwise in foods and supplements. Vitamin D helps to absorb calcium to maintain bone health as well as multiple other processes in the body.

Deficiency has been associated with multiple disease processes including diabetes, heart disease, cancer and others, but the mechanism by which this occurs and causality has not been proven.

Hormonal and Reproductive

42. Thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH)

TSH is a hormone produced by the pituitary gland in the brain. It stimulates the thyroid gland to produce and release T3 and T4. High levels of TSH may indicate an underactive thyroid, or hypothyroidism, where the thyroid isn't producing enough hormones.

Symptoms may include fatigue, weight gain, cold sensitivity, dry skin, and hair loss. Conversely, low levels of TSH can indicate an overactive thyroid, or hyperthyroidism, where the thyroid is producing too many hormones.

43. Thyroxine (T4)

One of the two primary hormones produced by the thyroid gland (the other being T3, or triiodothyronine). T4 and T3 help control your body's metabolism, affecting things like your heart rate, body temperature, and how quickly you burn calories.

Abnormal T4 levels can cause symptoms like fatigue, weight changes, temperature sensitivity, and changes in heart rate.

Kidney and Urinary

44. Creatinine

Creatinine (not to be confused with creatine) is a chemical primarily produced in our muscle or taken in the diet. It is used to estimate kidney filtering function.

As it is produced at a relatively constant rate, changes in blood levels of creatinine are more affected by the rate it is cleared from the body by the kidneys.

45. Estimated Glomerular Filtration Rate (eGFR)

eGFR is a calculated estimate of kidney function - it estimates the rate at which chemicals are being filtered through the glomeruli (the actual filters of the kidneys).

This is calculated based on levels of certain chemicals in the blood that should normally be filtered out by the kidneys.

46. Urea

Urea, also known as BUN, is a nitrogen compound produced in the liver as a result of protein breakdown and the removal of toxic ammonia from our body. Most of the urea is removed by the kidneys, and a small amount through the intestines.

Higher levels of urea in the blood can occur when kidney function is reduced, but can also occur in dehydration or in situations where there is increased protein breakdown (from the diet or your own body).

47. Sodium

Sodium is a major electrolyte in our body, and is essential for life. Sodium is a key part of many processes throughout our body, including cellular and nerve communication as well as maintaining fluid balance.

High sodium levels occur most commonly in dehydration where there is inadequate intake or too much water loss, while low sodium levels can occur if there is intake of too much water (dilution of sodium levels), with the use of certain medications and in diseases such as heart and kidney failure, amongst others.

48. Potassium

Potassium is an essential mineral in our body and is the most abundant cation within our cells. As an electrolyte, potassium is required for survival and facilitates muscle and heart contraction, digestion, nerve signalling and regulates blood pressure and fluid status.

49. Chloride

Chloride is a major electrolyte and is an important anion (negatively charged) in our body. It plays important roles in conduction of signals and processes throughout the body. Testing is useful in diagnosing the underlying causes of abnormal fluid levels or pH balances.

50. Bicarbonate

Measuring bicarbonate levels informs us about the acid-base and electrolyte balance of the body, playing a crucial role in maintaining our bodies pH.

A wide range of conditions that disrupt the pH of our body can affect bicarbonate levels, including severe dehydration, kidney, liver, respiratory and heart diseases amongst others.

51. Urine microalbumin

This test measures the amount of albumin, a type of protein, present in urine. Albumin is normally found in the blood, and healthy kidneys filter out small amounts of albumin into the urine. However, in certain conditions, notably kidney disease, the kidneys may let more albumin pass into the urine.

52. Urine Full and Microscopic Examination

This test examines the content of your urine, and can identify if there is excess protein, cells, blood, chemicals or micro-organisms in the urine to diagnose a wide range of kidney, urinary tract and even systemic conditions.

Blood

53. Hemoglobin

Haemoglobin is a protein found in red blood cells that carries oxygen and carbon dioxide to and from the body's tissues. It's important to maintain adequate levels of haemoglobin to ensure optimal tissue oxygenation.

A low haemoglobin level is referred to as anemia, and can be caused by chronic bleeding (eg excessive menstrual bleeding), chronic diseases, and vitamin or iron deficiencies. Higher levels are most often caused by dehydration or erythrocytosis, a state of excessive number of red blood cells.

54. Red Blood Cell Count

The most common type of cell in the bloodstream is the red blood cell, which carries haemoglobin and is responsible for transporting oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body.

Interpreting this test in conjunction with haemoglobin and other red blood cell metrics allows us to understand the health of our body's oxygen delivery system.

55. Hematocrit

This measures the percentage of blood volume that is made up of red blood cells. Changes in the concentration of RBCs or alternatively changes in the volume of plasma fluid will affect haematocrit results.

When one is severely dehydrated, there will be a higher concentration of RBCs compared to fluid (plasma) and haematocrit would thus appear much higher.

56. Mean Corpuscular Volume (MCV)

Mean corpuscular volume (MCV) is a measurement of the average volume or size of red blood cells. This gauge is useful in assessing the well-being of red blood cells and in states of anemia (low haemoglobin), gives us important clues to identify the underlying cause.

Optimal levels of iron, folate and B12 are commonly reflected by a healthy MCV, while certain blood disorders and chronic diseases can adversely affect MCV.

57. Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin (MCH)

Mean corpuscular haemoglobin (MCH) measures of the average amount of haemoglobin per red blood cell. Haemoglobin is the protein that binds oxygen and allows red blood cells to carry oxygen throughout the body.

58. Mean Corpuscular Hemoglobin Concentration (MCHC)

Mean corpuscular haemoglobin concentration (MCHC) correlates the amount of haemoglobin with the volume of each red blood cell and can be affected by mineral and vitamin levels as well as systemic diseases. MCHC, when interpreted in conjunction with other metrics, gives us useful information on the health of red blood cells.

59. Red Cell Distribution Width (RDW)

Red cell distribution width (RDW) measures how much variation there is in the size of the red blood cells in your blood specimen. Healthy red blood cells are usually similar in size, and having too much variation can help us determine causes of red blood cell disorders.

60. Platelet count

Platelets are a type of specialised blood cell that performs vital functions in blood clotting, inflammation, wound healing, and host defence. These cells are instrumental in communicating with other blood and vascular cells when activated, and their activation plays a key role in triggering immune responses.

Abnormal counts increase the risk of bleeding and clotting disorders, but can also reflect underlying autoimmune, blood and bone marrow disorders.

61. Mean platelet volume

Mean Platelet Volume (MPV) measures the average size of your platelets which, when interpreted with platelet count, reflect platelet health. It is important in determining the cause of thrombocytopenia (a low platelet count) or thrombocytosis (a high platelet count).

62. Peripheral Blood Film

A peripheral blood film is a microscopic examination of a thin layer of blood smeared on a glass slide. This diagnostic test provides valuable insights into the cellular components of blood, assessing the size, shape, and overall morphology of red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets.

The examination of a peripheral blood film is instrumental in identifying various blood disorders, including anemia, infections, and clotting disorders.

Cancer Detection

63. Fecal occult blood testing

Detects microscopic blood in the stool. This can be a sign of a problem in your digestive system, such as a growth, polyp, or cancer in the colon or rectum.

Conclusion

So there you have it, 63 biomarkers included in Mito's flagship package laid out for you how they optimise your health. You now have a solid overview of the key metrics we analyze to get a comprehensive picture of what’s going on inside your body.

But it doesn't end there - our longevity doctor uses these key biomarkers to form a science-based, personalized health plan incorporating supplements, nutrition, exercise and sleep strategies to supercharge your health.

Sign up for our flagship package today to take control of your health and your future. 

References

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Written By
J. Hsu
January 10, 2024
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