The team behind Osentia®

Osentia® was developed by Crescent Ops Ltd., a UK-based diagnostics company dedicated to early identification of an individuals’ risk of developing osteoporosis effectively.

The development of Osentia® is based upon the pioneering research of Dr Mark Towler, an eminent professor of biomedical engineering while working at the University of Limerick. Dr Towler, who is now based at Ryerson University in Canada, set out to investigate why osteoporosis patients noticed an improvement in their nails when they started treatment for their condition.

Dr Towler used laser-based Raman Spectroscopy technology to examine nail clippings from osteoporosis patients, comparing them to nail clippings from healthy individuals. He soon observed that levels of disulphide bond, needed to bind molecules of the strengthening protein keratin, were lower in the nail clippings from people with osteoporosis. Through bone scans, his research team subsequently found a link between levels of disulphide bonds in the nail and the risk of an individual developing a fragility fracture.1–3

Following this research, Crescent Ops Ltd. has worked with a number of established bone health centres across the UK and Ireland to test and refine Osentia®, creating a safe and accurate test that can identify your risk of fragility fractures.

The six test centres used in the clinical trials include:

  • Southampton University Hospitals NHS Trust
  • Western General Hospital Edinburg
  • Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
  • Cardiff University Academic Centre at Llandough Hospital
  • Greater Glasgow and Clyde NHS Trust
  • Mid-Western Regional Hospital in Limerick

The findings from these trials have been published in the journal, Clinical Medicine Insights: Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Disorders, which verifies the accuracy of the screening technology and Osentia®.4

Osentia®’s evidence base is firmly grounded in science and innovative technology. It has received support from renowned experts within the osteoporosis field, who have joined Osentia®’s Scientific Advisory Board including:

  • Professor Tim Spector, Professor of Genetic Epidemiology at Kings College London
  • Doctor Dennis Henriksen, Bio-organic Chemist, Ventac Partners A/S



1. M.R Towler et al. Raman spectroscopic  analysis of fingernail clippings is predictive of fracture risk in post-menopausal women [UNPUBLISHED]
2. M.R Towler et al. The use of fingernail as a means of assessing bone health; a pilot study. J. Women’s Health. 14/4 (2005).339-344
3. M.R. Towler et al. Raman Spectroscopy of the Human Nail: A Potential Tool for Evaluating Bone Health?’ J. Mat. Sci: Materials in Medicine.18/5 (2007).759-763
4. Beattie et al. Raman Spectroscopic Analysis of Fingernail Clippings Can Help Differentiate Between Postmenopausal Women Who Have and Have Not Suffered a Fracture. Clinical Medicine Insights: Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Disorders 2016:9 109–116 doi: 10.4137/CMAMD.S38493