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Thorne Research acquires personalized health data provider WellnessFX

By Hank Schultz , 10-Dec-2013

Thorne Research, through its subsidiary Health Elements, has made a major stride into the arena of personalized nutrition with the acquisition of Wellness FX, a San-Francisco based company that helps customers manage their personal health data via a series of ‘dashboards.’ Details of the deal were not disclosed.

WellnessFX, founded in 2010, uses data gathered from blood samples given by users at established labs. The results from those tests are then plugged into the company’s propriety software tool and displayed on personal dashboards through which users can track their progress via changes in given parameters. The company also provides nutrition and lifestyle coaching.

“We’ve been watching this since they launched,” Paul Jacobson, CEO of both Thorne Research and Health Elements, told NutraIngredients-USA. “We’ve always thought this had a lot of potential.  The way the data was displayed we thought was brilliant.”

Thorne specializes in offering a range of nutritional supplements and health products to the practitioner channel of distribution.  Having a customer base highly qualified to help end users interact with the kind of data that the Wellness FX platform provides made the acquisition a natural fit, Jacobson said.

“We believe that this is a business that is tailor made for our customers—the doctors—and that is one of the primary reasons we were interested,” he said. “It allows the practitioner to extend the walls of his or her practice.”

Combined entity

WellnessFX will be combined with Health Elements, Jacobson said. Health Elements was already putting together health information in personalized portals for patients. The combined entity will offer health providers and individual patients a range of personalized health services and products, including capabilities in blood testing and other diagnostic tools that can be used to develop more effective health and wellness strategies. In addition, WellnessFX will include access to the full portfolio of products and health information and services available from Thorne Research.

"The combination of the Health Elements technology platform with WellnessFX’s established brand strengths in personalized health and readily accessible diagnostic services represents a major new advantage for both health professionals and patients. By bringing these resources together, WellnessFX will make FDA-approved diagnostic, genetic and treatment information more accessible and usable than ever before,” Jacobson said.

Verification of results

The new, more powerful tools offered by the new entity will more easily get around one of the hurdles of nutritional interventions for some patients, that is, the doubt of patients raised in an era of pervasive pharmaceuticals that supplements can be effective.

“We will give the practitioner the ability to see that it works in the blood. The same would be true if the practitioner puts the patient on a different diet. It doesn’t just have to be supplements,” he said.

“The best part about it for the patient to really see how these products work,” Jacobson said.

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