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ChromaDex External Research Program


Setting the Industry Standard for Excellence
in Collaborative Research

The ChromaDex External Research Program (CERP) is an essential component of ChromaDex’s R&D Program. We value and encourage strong scientific rigor behind our products, and our relationships with academic institutions help make this happen. Through CERP, we freely provide ChromaDex material and technical expertise for exceptional preclinical and clinical, investigator-initiated research projects. Additionally, we fund select research studies supporting ChromaDex’s business needs. As a result, we developed over 220 Material Transfer Agreements (MTAs) and Research Agreements globally, resulting in more than 65 peer-reviewed publications as of December 2020.


Why Should You Apply for CERP?

A History of Excellence

For over 20 years, ChromaDex has been an industry leader in analytical methods, reference standards, and proprietary ingredients. ChromaDex is the main owner and licensee of intellectual property (IP) related to nicotinamide riboside (NR). In collaboration with our strategic partners, ChromaDex manufactures both NR as an ingredient, Niagen®, and a finished dietary supplement product, Tru Niagen®, to the highest quality standards. We were honored with the “2019 Best of the Industry: Ingredient Supplier” award from Nutritional Outlook for our efforts to set the industry standard for excellence in commercial science and safety.

High Quality Safety Tested Material and Regulatory Acceptance

Our NR has been successfully notified to the FDA as both a New Dietary Ingredient (NDI) and a Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) ingredient, both acknowledgments of its safety and acceptance for dietary supplement and food applications in the US. Our product has also received a positive opinion from the European Food Safety Authority, and was approved as a novel food ingredient by the European Commission. Elsewhere, our product has been approved as a natural health product by Health Canada and approved by the Therapeutic Goods Administration of Australia as a complementary medicine. We are the only NR-Cl product that has obtained any of these safety reviews and approvals. Our ingredient is also analyzed in an ISO accredited laboratory.

Our Material is Trusted

When it comes to clinical research, independent investigators overwhelmingly chose ChromaDex’s Niagen®. Approximately 70% of NR studies registered on are using or have used our materials.

We Build Relationships

One of the goals of CERP is to build community and provide support to external investigators. From the application process to MTA development to publications and beyond, we provide CERP Investigators (CERPIs) with protocol recommendations, letters of support, manuscript peer-review, intellectual property insights, and more. We want CERPIs to improve their likelihood of success while still maintaining independence and research integrity.

As you determine the source of NR that you will use for your future studies, please keep the following in mind:

  • Some forms of NR-CI are unstable. ChromaDex’s crystalline form is highly stable as a powder. Other providers may sell a highly unstable, amorphous form that quickly gelatinizes when exposed to air, resulting in degradation.
  • Isomeric purity. Our Niagen® is evaluated for the beta-NR conformation to ensure it is the bioactive form. If the NR-Cl is a mixture of alpha- and beta-NR, the efficacy may be reduced, and little is known if the alpha-NR conformation would inhibit the NAD+ biochemical pathway.
  • The successful review of Niagen® and approval by regulators worldwide is a direct reflection of the strong science, safety, quality, and consistency behind it. We possess an intimate understanding of the manufacturing process and composition of the final ingredient material. For third-party sourced NR-Cl, there is little known about the potential contaminants (by-products, solvents, impurities), which could impact study results and reproducibility.

Examples of Published CERP Studies

Investigator Initiated Preclinical Research

Fang et al. NAD+ replenishment improves lifespan and healthspan in ataxia telangiectasia models via mitophagy and DNA repair. Cell Metabolism. 2016 Oct 11;24(4):566-81.

Hou et al. NAD+ supplementation normalizes key Alzheimer’s features and DNA damage responses in a new AD mouse model with introduced DNA repair deficiency. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 2018 Feb 20;115(8):E1876-85.

Heer et al. Coronavirus infection and PARP expression dysregulate the NAD Metabolome: an actionable component of innate immunity. Journal of Biological Chemistry. 2020 Oct 13: jbc-RA120.

Hamity et al. Nicotinamide riboside relieves paclitaxel-induced peripheral neuropathy and enhances suppression of tumor growth in tumor-bearing rats. Pain. 2020 Oct 1;161(10):2364-75.

Sun et al. Re‐equilibration of imbalanced NAD metabolism ameliorates the impact of telomere dysfunction. The EMBO Journal. 2020 Nov 2;39(21):e 103420.

Investigator Initiated Clinical Research

Martens et al. Chronic nicotinamide riboside supplementation is well-tolerated and elevates NAD+ in healthy middle-aged and older adults. Nature Communications. 2018 Mar 29;9(1):1-1.

Dollerup et al. A randomized placebo-controlled clinical trial of nicotinamide riboside in obese men: safety, insulin-sensitivity, and lipid-mobilizing effects. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2018 Aug 1;108(2):343-53.

Remie et al. Nicotinamide riboside supplementation alters body composition and skeletal muscle acetylcarnitine concentrations in healthy obese humans. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2020; 112(2): 413–426.

Zhang et al. “The acute effect of metabolic cofactor supplementation: a potential therapeutic strategy against non‐alcoholic fatty liver disease.” Molecular Systems Biology 16.4 (2020): e9495.

ChromaDex Sponsored Peer-Reviewed Research

Trammell et al. “Nicotinamide riboside is uniquely and orally bioavailable in mice and humans.” Nature Communications 7 (2016): 12948.

Conze et al. “Safety assessment of nicotinamide riboside, a form of vitamin B3.” Human & Experimental Toxicology 35.11 (2016): 1149-1160.

Conze et al. “Safety and metabolism of long-term administration of NIAGEN (nicotinamide riboside chloride) in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial of healthy overweight adults.” Scientific Reports 9.1 (2019): 1-13.

Hayat and Migaud. “Nicotinamide riboside–amino acid conjugates that are stable to purine nucleoside phosphorylase.” Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry 18.15 (2020): 2877-2885.



We are currently prioritizing partnerships with academic researchers looking to use nicotinamide riboside and other ChromaDex materials to advance knowledge in one or more of the following research areas:

  • Age-related declines in health
  • Exercise benefits
  • Fatigue & energy improvement
  • Cognition and brain health
  • Mitochondrial health
  • Heart health
  • Liver health
  • Immune health
  • Skin health

If you are interested in becoming a CERP Investigatorusing ChromaDex materials for your research, please download and complete the appropriate application below. As our program is highly selective, we recommend that you finalize your protocol details and obtain the required ethical approval(s) before submitting your CERP application. An esteemed group of internal multi-disciplinary scientists will evaluate and score your application and supplementary materials. Typically, we provide a response or request for additional information within 30 days of receiving the application. If selected for the program, we will then develop a Material Transfer Agreement (MTA) to issue the material(s) and provide technical expertise. 


For more information and application submission, please email [email protected].