In April, supplement brand Standard Process opened what could become a leading source of scientific support for nutritional interventions in health care.
The Standard Process Center of Excellence is located in Kannapolis, N.C., and is designed so that scientists can integrate with teams at other centers on the North Carolina Research Campus. We asked Standard Process Chief Scientific Officer John Troup about the mission behind the center and how it differs from similar efforts.
What will the Standard Process Nutrition Innovation Center do that other institutions are not doing?
John Troup: The Nutrition Innovation Center fully integrates a continuum of agricultural sciences (organic and adaptive regenerative farming) focused on plant nutrient density to discovery. We have development/food science labs, a major research clinic and an advanced media learning center. With these elements, the center accelerates the development of innovative nutrition technologies, validates the use of nutrition therapy, and advances the educational training and insights for practitioners.
In addition to this full integration in the continuum of product launches, the center includes a research-focused clinic that represents the practice of the future in integrative and functional medicine. The center serves as the central coordinating unit for the National Coalition of Collaborating Centers for Case Observation Studies in a way that demonstrates patient outcomes and confirms new clinical practices in functional and integrative medicine. The clinic also serves as a focused site for specialized patient care and a peer-to-peer education program of care.The Media Learning Center delivers innovation in education and uses augmented reality for practitioner education—in a first-of-its kind/one-of-its-kind technology, the center uses state-of-the-art instructional and engagement tools that enhance the learning experience.
How is the clinic organized?
JT: The clinic does three things for us: Randomized control trails; serves as a hub for our national center for collaborating care observation study work, so we are able to access nutrition intervention programs under the functional and innovative medical models to access and evaluate outcomes; and allows us to demonstrate very specific functional medicine nutrition therapy protocols so we can use that group of patients as an example from peer to peer education, fellowships and in additional support for patient care.
Will there be outreach to mainstream medicine, and what will that look like?
JT: Using new models of clinical nutrition care and delivery, the center will collaborate with mainstream clinical care including community health centers and institutions where adaptation of functional and integrative medical care principles can be assessed and integrated into patient care programs. The center intends to provide strong clinical insights and leadership in the use of nutrition for functional and integrative medicine. By developing sound clinical protocols based on original strong science, personalized health care programs will be provided and assessed through the clinic.
Will there be collaboration with brands outside of Standard Process?
JT: Definitely. We already have a number of collaborations with other major institutions across the country, but we are also interested in working with other biotech companies and early-stage companies that want a larger partner. Where there’s the chance and where there makes sense to collaborate with other nutrition companies, we are happy to do that as well, as long as they have a common interest of integrating nutrition in health care.
What kinds of research is planned?
JT: Advanced clinical practices with new nutritional protocols will be assessed as adjunctive care in functional neurology and acupuncture care regimen as well as in more traditional care practices in digestive health and wellness and other selected chronic health issues.
Are there specific nutrition-related conditions or challenges that the center will focus?
JT: Major therapeutic platforms of interest are cognitive performance and enhancement and immune-modulation/resolution of inflammation; precision/personalized nutrition; cardio-metabolic health; digestive health; and lifestyle balance/preventive care.
How will the center work with other research teams on the Research Campus?
JT: Collaborating research and education programs are already in place with many of the centers across the campus. We have already created a campus-wide advisory group that works together and provides insights to help us develop education research programs. For example, we are working with the David H. Murdock Research Institute in developing new diagnostic tools and measurements, and we have a working group on digital platforms and diagnostics. We also have a working group on precision nutrition, developing genetic testing and developing clinical trails around personalized nutrition. All of our collaborations in advisory groups are very specific to the expertise that’s connected to our interest in clinical care and product development.
Will all of the clinical and pre-clinical research will be conducted on site?
JT: While much of the research will be done on site, the center has also established other major collaborations with leading health care and nutrition institutions and departments across the Nation. Many of these studies are being completed in the next several months and will be available through publications and the educational programs provided by Standard Process.