Recognition of differences between pharmaceutical and natural compounds is critical to study design, Metagenics says

SAN CLEMENTE, CA (February 5, 2008)—Metagenics, Inc. said today that its Chief Science Officer, Jeffrey Bland, PhD, FACN presented a keynote address, “Why the Controversy Concerning the Value of Natural Supplements?” at the Scripps Center for Integrative Medicine’s 5th Annual Conference, entitled Natural Supplements: An Evidence-Based Update Conference on January 20, 2008 in San Diego.

Dr. Bland reviewed the study design of 98 clinical trials involving natural supplements published in top-ranked peer-reviewed medical journals. In the majority of these studies the natural supplements did not demonstrate positive outcomes when compared against placebo. A potential reason may be that the traditional “one agent-one outcome” study design used in the clinical study of pharmaceutical compounds, which have a limited number of active molecules, may have limitations for the study of natural supplements. He proposed that a more appropriate clinical study design will recognize that foods and other natural compounds do not impact physiology like pharmaceutical compounds; rather, they work as groups of bioactive molecules to modulate genetic expression. Hence, a more effective clinical study design will allow for the determination of how specific health outcomes relate to intervention with complex mixtures of bioactive compounds.

The Conference was attended by healthcare providers and the public and covered a wide range of issues related to the roles of foods, herbs, and supplements in the management of common medical conditions as well as information on bringing integrative medicine into a clinical practice. The Scripps Center for Integrative Medicine offers conventional and scientifically validated complementary medicine. Through clinical research, education, prevention and lifestyle changes, the Center seeks to empower its patients to take charge of their health.

About Jeffrey Bland, PhD, FACN
Jeffrey S. Bland, PhD, is internationally respected for his ground-breaking work in nutrigenomics and nutritional biochemistry, applied clinical nutrition, and functional medicine. Dr. Bland received his PhD from the University of Oregon in 1971, and served as a professor of chemistry at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Washington, for 13 years. He also served as Senior Research Scientist at the Linus Pauling Institute of Science and Medicine, and directed the Bellevue-Redmond Medical Laboratory in Washington State. He is the author of more than 150 papers and five books on nutrition and its relationship to health and disease. For the past 15 years, Dr. Bland has produced Functional Medicine Update (FMU), a monthly audio tape in which he reviews and synthesizes the medical literature and interviews notable clinicians and researchers.

About Metagenics, Inc.

Metagenics is a life sciences company and leading developer and manufacturer of professional grade, science-based medical foods and nutraceuticals sold to healthcare practitioners worldwide. For more than 25 years, Metagenics has been a leader in quality, scientific discovery, and innovation, with multiple proprietary formula patents and more than 400 research-based products to optimize health. The company is headquartered in San Clemente, CA, with manufacturing and research facilities located in Gig Harbor, WA, including the MetaProteomics® Nutrigenomics Research Center and the Functional Medicine Research CenterSM for human clinical research. For more information, please visit


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