Research & Laboratory Partners

Medical research now confirms health is directly linked to how our genes respond to food and activity.  In other words, genetic expression is to a large degree modulated by nutrients and other environmental factors, not by one’s inherited genetics themselves.   Paragon Technologies Ltd. first recognized these relationships during research in 1989, and has since been very successful reversing problematic disease states and enhancing physical & mental performance. 

Paragon Medical Sciences, a division of Paragon Technologies, was initially formed in 2004 by Sam Bock, Paragon’s Director of Research, and Cyrus Kuzharani, R.Phm., B.Sc. Phm., former lab director for the International Centre for Metabolic Testing in Ottawa, Canada.

In addition to conducting its own research, Paragon works with doctors and researchers from leading international metabolic testing & compounding laboratories and research groups partnered with Paragon. 

These industry leading laboratory partners also provide the testing and compounding Paragon provides  doctors & patients using our biochemical analysis.  Paragon assists those physicians & patients choose the appropriate combination of metabolic testing.  Subsequent analysis of that testing is then used to custom design nutritional therapies, detoxification programs, and other interventions for the prevention, mitigation, and/or treatment of complex chronic disease.

Metametrix Clinical Laboratory

Metametrix Clinical Laboratory is a world leader in metabolic testing and research, and provides Paragon both with laboratory services and research consulting.  Dr. Alexander Bralley (CEO) and Dr. Richard Lord (Director, Science and Education) lead the distinguished Metametrix research team and jointly wrote the landmark book, Laboratory Evaluations in Molecular Medicine.  Metametrix is recognized internationally as a pioneer in the development of nutritional, metabolic, and toxicant clinical testing to identify nutritional imbalances and toxicities underlying chronic diseases.  

The Metametrix research team introduced several medical firsts, including: 

  • quantitative organic acid analysis to identify nutrient and other metabolic imbalances 
  • quantitative fatty acid analysis 
  • multi-profile combinations for “comprehensive” analysis of nutrients and toxicities 
  • fingerstick technology for a noninvasive option 
  • DNA identification of gut microbes 

Metametrix continues to develop innovative testing profiles with “Next Generation Technology” to further advance treatment options for chronic diseases such as cardiovascular, gastrointestinal, inflammatory, mental/emotional, and autism spectrum disorders.  As an early adopter of advances in laboratory science, Metametrix functions as a reference provider for other clinical laboratories and also performs testing for research institutions as they study the influence of nutrients and toxicities on health.

Trace Elements Clinical Laboratory

Trace Elements Clinical Laboratory is the world’s leading provider of hair tissue mineral analysis (HTMA) for thousands of health-care professionals of all specialties in over 46 countries.  Its state-of-the-art testing is highly effective in helping to determine protocols to treat various degenerative conditions. HTMA also represents the best method to test for ongoing exposure to toxic heavy metals.

The accurate measurement of specific balances of intracellular minerals in the body predicts specific metabolic conditions related to many disease states.  This is because specific vitamins and minerals work together as co-enzyme factors that control the action of most enzymes in the body, which in turn affect genetic expression, metabolic activity, and health dependant on enzyme function.  

Over 30 years ago Trace Element’s founder Dr. David L. Watts, Ph.D. recognized the critically important links between mineral balance, vitamin utilization, enzyme activity in the body, and health.  He further realized that the mineral balance in tissues, including hair, is reflective of the overall mineral balance in the body.  To determine the specific affects of minerals on metabolism and disease, Watts worked with physicians to collect thousands of hair samples from patients with a wide range of confirmed medical diagnoses.  As expected, most patients with specific conditions had remarkably similar balances of minerals in their tissues.  This allowed his research team to determine and isolate metabolic activity, hormone function, emotional behaviour, learning capability, detoxification capability, and the existence or potential for disease states associated with specific balances of minerals & vitamins in the body.  

Dr. Watts’ clinical research work on over 900,000 samples collected from MDs’ patients shows that returning cellular metabolism to normal requires the correction of mineral imbalances and elimination of toxins.  The research work of Paragon’s Director Of Research Sam Bock also indicates that specific imbalance of foods and environmental factors are contributing to disease and toxicity in the body.  Paragon has established an active research dialogue with Trace Elements, and works closely with Dr. Watts on specific medical case studies.

Dr. Watts’ clinical work represents a significant contribution to medicine.  The following innovations and contributions made by him and his Trace Elements research team are the result of a consistent dedication to the growing field of nutritional therapeutics:

  • Recognition of 1) the biochemical interrelationships between: vitamin/mineral, mineral/mineral, and vitamin/vitamin, and 2) of the importance of addressing these when formulating any nutritional plan or intervention.
  • Establishment of the link between the nutritional, neurological, and endocrine systems, as determined by hair mineral patterns.
  • Identification of endocrine interrelationships and their impact upon biochemical and nutritional status; recognition of specific nutritional influences upon the biochemical and endocrine systems.
  • Development of a precise nutritional therapeutic approach based on the recognition of eight (8) individual biochemical types using elemental analysis of hair.
  • Recognition of the Sympathetic and Parasympathetic responses to metabolic dysfunctions.
  • Categorization of individual nutrients according to their sympathetic or parasympathetic effects.
  • Development of metabolic supplements synergistically formulated for specific metabolic types.

Background for Patients and Physicians: 

Trace Elements is a licensed and certified clinical laboratory that undergoes regular inspections with the Clinical Laboratory Division of the Department of Health and Human Services, HCFA.  TEI uses ICP-Mass Spectrometry, the most modern and expensive analytical technique yet to be applied to routine elemental analysis. TEI performs all testing in a clean room environment and utilizes the latest microwave temperature-controlled digestion technique.  Each patient result is based upon an hourly National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) traceable standard curve, a rigorous quality control validation for every 24 specimens, and is compared to a representative reference range derived from the like analysis of an international collection of normal and "healthy" subjects. TEI performs routine spiked sample recoveries, daily split specimen analysis, and voluntarily participates in various interlaboratory test comparison (TC) surveys.  TEI, like many laboratories, participates in an on-going Quality Assurance/Quality Control program and adheres to CLIA guidelines for precision, reliability and overall good laboratory practices. 

Trace Elements uses state-of-the-art ICP-Mass Spectrometry (Sciex Elan 6100 and 9000 models) for all trace element determinations. These multiple systems are capable of easily handling a high volume of specimens in applications such as HTMA where limits of detection requirements are in the part-per-million (ppm) and low part-per-billion (ppb) range. TEI uses the most advanced high-volume and uniform temperature-controlled microwave digestion (CEM Mars 5 Plus) technique. Microwave digestion is the method of choice for speed, reduced contamination, complete digestions, and retention of analytes to insure precise results. Trace Elements laboratory is equipped with a trace element class clean room utilizing HEPA filtration systems. The clean room ensures air quality and temperatures are isolated in order to protect equipment and processed specimens from potential contamination. High sensitivity balances used by the laboratory for calibration/QC check standards and specimen weighing are calibrated with weight sets traceable to NIST. All stock standards used for daily calibration and Quality Control are prepared by a leading ISO 9001 certified laboratory. In addition, all standard material is sourced from NIST standard reference material. The laboratory uses 18 megohm double-deionized water, sterile polypropylene wet-digestion and sampling test tubes, acid-leached, triple-rinsed miscellaneous glassware and plasticware. All glassware when used is Class A.

Trace Elements conducts daily, weekly and monthly QA/QC studies to confirm and validate all aspects of test methodology, including precision, accuracy and verifiable detection limits.  The laboratory continuously evaluates different aspects of daily laboratory performance, such as; reagents, QC reference materials, split specimen analysis, double-blind samples, spiked samples, calibration-verification studies and routine daily monitoring of patient data trends, before, during and after each daily analytical run. This attention to detail assures that clients receive data obtained by the highest standards. Additional audits involve personnel training, laboratory reporting, safety issues, customer service, etc... 

Laboratory management also utilizes an extremely comprehensive and thorough state-of-the art proprietary data management program that features automated quality control (AQC) software to assist the chief technologist and laboratory director in validating all QC test results and individual specimen test results prior to release for eventual report processing. Trace Elements successfully participates in an on-going proficiency testing program with Le Centre de Toxicologie du Quebec, which offers urine, blood and hair tissue elemental testing involving clinical laboratories that utilize high resolution instrumentation in North America and Europe. Also participating in various other interlaboratory test comparison studies, Trace Elements is committed to providing the clinician with timely, precise and reliable test data.

NutriChem Biomedical Testing Lab

NutriChem Biomedical Testing Lab specializes in analytical testing of human metabolism, identifying nutritional influences on health maintenance and disease prevention.  Created by Kent MacLeod, B. Sc.Phm, NutriChem's Biomedical Laboratory grew out of a need to better serve patients and health professionals with detailed information about an individual's nutritional and metabolic status.  A medical pioneer, Macleod was the founder of Canada’s first comprehensive metabolic testing laboratories, the International Centre for Metabolic Testing. 

MacLeod is a leading authority on the impact of nutrition on the biochemistry of individual disease states.  He has been invited to speak around the world on topics such as Down syndrome, Autism, Attention Deficit Disorder, Menopause, and Cancer.  Well known for his expertise, he has the unique ability to simplify the complex aspects of pharmaceutical and nutraceutical approaches.  

Founder and Clinical Director of NutriChem Medical Centre, he works with the Centre's medical team to ensure that patients receive the best combination of conventional and natural treatments for disease management.  He is the recipient of the 2009 Canadian Compounding Pharmacist of the Year award, as well as the 2004 Outstanding Service Award for Innovation, and is the author of “Down Syndrome and Vitamin Therapy: Unlocking the Secrets of Health, Behavior and Intelligence”.   NutriChem has collaborated with Canada's National Research Council and numerous private institutions. 

NutriChem's Biomedical Laboratory operates with a focus on testing and patient-centered solutions.  Test panels offered include: amino acids, essential fatty acids, urinary organic acids, antioxidants, oxidative stress biomarkers, hormones, and other advanced panels.

NutriChem Compounding Pharmacy

NutriChem Compounding Pharmacy was established by Kent MacLeod B. Sc.Phm in the early 1980s to provide health professionals and clients with current research and innovative professional services.   

NutriChem  expanded the traditional role of compounding to include the ability to customize vitamin, mineral, amino acid, protein supplements, and chelating compounds for detoxification.  NutriChem designs formulations to meet specific nutritional and metabolic needs determined through testing and analysis of blood, hair, urine and stool that identify potential toxicity, nutrient deficiencies, metabolic abnormalities, and oxidative stress.   

NutriChem works closely with Paragon to provide the custom nutritional and pharmaceutical needs determined through testing done at the NutriChem Biomedical Testing Lab, Metametrix Clinical Laboratory, and/or Trace Elements Clinical Laboratory.

JSS Medical Research

In July 2007 Paragon entered into a partnership with JSS Medical Research to develop advanced metabolic testing protocols for use in large nation-wide health studies.  JSS Medical Research is a team of 50 researchers headed by Dr. John S. Sampalis, a clinical epidemiologist with undergraduate training in Microbiology, Immunology and Neuroscience and graduate training in Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics (M.Sc. and Ph.D.) from McGill University.  Currently a tenured Associate Professor of Surgery and Epidemiology & Biostatics with the Faculty of Medicine of McGill University, he also holds equivalent appointments with the Faculties of Medicine at Laval University and the University of Montreal.

Possessing extensive expertise in health services research, clinical trials and the evaluation of medical technology, Dr. Sampalis also offers services as a Research and Epidemiological Consultant for numerous pharmaceutical companies, hospitals and government organizations and agencies. With over 100 peer reviewed publications,100 presentations, and federal and provincial research grants awarded, Dr. Sampalis is recognized as one of Canada’s leading epidemiologists, as well as the top trauma researcher in Canada. Currently, he holds a Medical Scientist Salary Award from the Medical Research Council of Canada and has previously received numerous prestigious scholarships and awards including the National Health Research and Development Scholar from Health Canada. Dr. Sampalis currently participates as a reviewer for five leading peer reviewed journals and as a committee member for provincial and federal funding agencies.

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