|Founders||Leonard Guarente, Eric Marcotulli, Dan Alminana|
Elysium Health is a company founded in 2014 by biologist Leonard Guarente, Dan Alminana, and Eric Marcotulli to market dietary supplements. The next year, the company started selling a dietary supplement called Basis that packages two supplements, nicotinamide riboside (NR), a form of B vitamin found in yeast, and pterostilbene, a polyphenol found in blueberries, into one capsule. The company says that these two ingredients help cells make nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) and that they stimulate sirtuins. The company is widely described as being in the anti-aging field and similar to Sirtris Pharmaceuticals which was developing resveratrol.
Elysium has tried to differentiate the product within the dietary supplement industry as being more scientific and exclusive, by means of the product's minimalist packaging, by not selling the product in drug stores but rather only through its website, and by getting several Nobel prize winners to join its scientific advisory board. The company has been criticized for using this advisory board to lend credibility to its product. Like other companies in the supplement industry, Elysium marketed the product heavily on social media.
Elysium originally bought the ingredients in Basis from ChromaDex, which as of December 2016, sold the two ingredients to other supplement companies that also marketed products containing them. The two companies had an agreement under which Elysium Health didn't have to acknowledge ChromaDex as the source of the ingredients, but then after Elysium recruited the head of business development from Chromadex and allegedly stopped paying Chromadex, Chromadex sued Elysium and the information became public. In September 2018, Dartmouth College and ChromaDex sued Elysium for infringement of two issued patents exclusively licensed by ChromaDex on use of NR to increase NAD that were invented by Charles Brenner.
Elysium is one of several companies founded at around the same time by people with backgrounds in the tech industry and Silicon Valley who saw opportunities in the health and biomedical industries, often focused on anti-aging.
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