Crescent Diagnostics is an early stage diagnostics company incorporated in the UK, with a laboratory in Derry, Northern Ireland and offices at University College Dublin in the Republic of Ireland. The company is a spin-out of the University of Limerick and founded upon research conducted by the Crescent co-founder Dr Mark Towler, currently Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada.

Crescent is led by CEO Brendan Farrell, a veteran of the diagnostic industry, and Chairman Barry Clare, a former main board director of Boots plc. Since its establishment Crescent has raised over Euro 4m, and its investors include Seroba Kernel, Kernel Capital, Enterprise Equity and Enterprise Ireland.

Crescent Diagnostics has developed BQT® (Bone Quality Test) as a screening technology for assessing the risk of osteoporosis. Osteoporosis represents a significant challenge around the world affecting one in three women and one in five men over fifty. The cost of hip fractures resulting from osteoporosis is estimated at €36 billion annually to treat in the EU.

BQT® will be marketed as an over-the-counter test in the UK and the Republic of Ireland under the name Osentia®. It will be sold through pharmacies and other retail outlets and through the internet, using a consumer-to-lab business model.

BQT® analyses the keratin structure in nail clippings using Raman spectrometry. The analysis of keratin is able to is able to differentiate between people showing a risk of fragility fracture and those that do not.

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