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Reference Guide
DHA Laboratory

DHA Laboratory

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DHA Laboratory
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About the Lab

DHA Laboratory specializes in the kryptopyrrole quantitative urine analysis and functional blood chemistries to aid in the research and treatment of behavioral and emotional conditions such as anxiety, depression, autism spectrum disorders, ADHD, schizophrenia, PTSD, and neurodegenerative diseases. The lab continues the work initiated by Ellen Hanson in the late 1970s, maintaining close collaborations with top clinicians globally to provide reliable biochemical assays.

About DHA Laboratory

DHA Laboratory is a CLIA-licensed, high complexity lab renowned for its dependable biochemical assays that aid in the functional treatment of mental, emotional, and behavioral conditions. Founded in 2003 by Ellen Hanson, the lab supports the treatment methodologies pioneered by the original Pfeiffer Treatment Center, led by Dr. Carl Pfeiffer and Dr. William Walsh.

DHA has set the global standard with its development and validation of the Kryptopyrrole Quantitative Urine Test. This test is utilized by clinicians in 22 countries and forms a core part of DHA’s testing services. These services have been instrumental in the research and treatment of over 600,000 patients with conditions such as anxiety, depression, autism spectrum disorders, ADHD, and schizophrenia.

History and Development

Located in Mount Prospect, Illinois, DHA was founded by Ellen Hanson in 2003 to support the treatment model of the original Pfeiffer Treatment Center. Ellen started work to validate the kryptopyrrole quantitative urine procedure in the late 1970s and has since worked with the top clinicians worldwide to provide reliable biochemical assays. 

The laboratory is now owned and operated by Ellen and her son, Dan Hanson.

Today, DHA Laboratory is a third generation, family-owned and operated laboratory that performs the kryptopyrrole quantitative urine analysis in-house and services functional blood chemistries used in the research and treatment of over 80,000 patients with behavioral and emotional conditions.

Nutrient therapies for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, pioneered by the late Dr. Carl Pfeiffer, are used by complementary and functional medicine doctors worldwide. Dr. William Walsh collaborated with Dr. Pfeiffer for 12 years in extending this medical system to include behavior disorders and ADHD.  

After Dr. Pfeiffer's death in 1988, Dr. Walsh co-founded the non-profit Pfeiffer Treatment Center in Illinois, which treated more than 25,000 patients, and became a world leader in advanced nutrient therapy.  Dr. Walsh has expanded its protocols to help patients challenged by autism and Alzheimer's disease. 

In 2008, Dr. Walsh left the Pfeiffer Treatment Center and founded the Walsh Research Institute.  DHA laboratory continues to partner with Walsh-trained practitioners for assessment of nutrient imbalances in behavioral and emotional conditions.

DHA Laboratory's core testing supports the Walsh/Pfeifer Model, which has been used in the treatment of over 1 million patients with conditions ranging from autism to AD(H)D to other behavioral and emotional conditions.

Mission and Values of DHA Laboratory

DHA's mission is to revolutionize health care. Working hand in hand with practitioners, DHA Lab specializes in identifying the root cause of clinical symptoms with defensible data and pinpoint accuracy. 

They support healthcare providers and patients in their quest to understand how to treat and relieve symptoms with advanced nutrient therapies.

DHA Laboratory has created the Physician Partnership Program to further support practitioners.  

They state that: “We started DHA Laboratory because we wanted to bring easy access to science and action for all medical practices that wish to overcome the struggle of treating mental and emotional conditions…

We saw a need for licensed physicians and unlicensed practitioners to have ONE PLACE to order any lab in the industry and better streamline their busy practices…

So, the Physician Partnership Program was born, to create the best client and patient laboratory experience, while providing unlicensed practitioners support for each and every lab they choose to run on their clients, through the partnering physicians we provide.”

Accreditations and Recognition

DHA Laboratory is CLIA-Certified.  

Popular Tests Offered by DHA Laboratory

In addition to the following specialty labs developed by DHA Laboratory in conjunction with Drs. Pfeiffer, Walsh and other experts, DHA Laboratory also offers a wide variety of laboratory assessment including blood, urine, and saliva testing.  

Testing options include but are not limited to routine bloodwork; hormone analysis; assessment of heavy metal, mold and other toxicities; and more.  

Kryptopyrrole Quantitative Analysis

The kryptopyrrole quantitative urine test is a non-invasive diagnostic tool used to assess the risk of oxidative stress and evaluate dopamine and norepinephrine production linked to zinc and vitamin B6 levels. 

This test specifically measures hydroxyhemopyrrolin-2-one (HPL), a byproduct of hemoglobin synthesis. Elevated HPL levels, which bind zinc and B6, may indicate pyrrole disorder.  Pyrrole disorders are commonly associated with various behavioral and emotional conditions including ADHD, autism, depression, and schizophrenia. 

This cost-effective test is crucial for identifying the underlying causes of symptoms related to neurotransmitter production, providing a foundation for targeted treatment strategies.

Methylation Panels Including Whole Blood Histamine Level Assessment

Methylation testing is pivotal for understanding and managing conditions such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression, and other behavioral disorders, where abnormalities in methylation and folate chemistry are frequently observed. 

Over two-thirds of individuals diagnosed with these disorders exhibit methylation imbalances, which are critical for activating numerous neurotransmitters. One effective method to assess methylation status is through whole blood histamine testing, which provides clear numerical values indicating over or under-methylation. 

These values can be retested post-treatment to gauge the effectiveness of interventions. Unlike other methods such as MTHFR gene testing or methylation profile plasmas that show SAM/SAH ratios, whole blood histamine offers a quantitative, repeatable measure. Addressing these methylation imbalances has shown significant improvements in patients suffering from a range of mental and emotional disorders.

Copper/Zinc Ratio and % of Free Copper

The Copper/Zinc Ratio and Percentage of Free Copper are crucial tests in mental health diagnostics as they reveal imbalances often seen in individuals with mental disorders.  These levels are assessed through copper, zinc and ceruloplasmin blood tests. 

A significant finding in these populations is zinc deficiency, which is prevalent in over 90% of cases involving depression, behavioral disorders, ADHD, autism, and schizophrenia. The deficiency levels can range from marginally low to severe and are associated with numerous health issues including delayed growth, temper control problems, poor immune function, and various neurobehavioral and cognitive difficulties.

Conversely, copper overload is commonly observed in individuals with hyperactivity, learning disabilities, postpartum depression, autism, and paranoid schizophrenia. This imbalance often co-occurs with low zinc levels and heightened oxidative stress, contributing to further complications like personality disorders. 

These disorders may also feature a combination of zinc deficiency, oxidative stress, undermethylation, and elevated levels of toxic metals. Normalizing copper levels through nutrient therapy can effectively balance neurotransmitter levels such as dopamine and norepinephrine, offering relief and improved mental health outcomes for affected individuals.

Mental M.A.P. Panels

The Mental M.A.P.™️ panels, including versions 1.0, 2.0, and 3.0, are innovative offerings from DHA Laboratory that help elucidate the causes of symptoms arising from mental health dysfunctions. These tests assess factors like microglial cell activation, neuroinflammation, and excitotoxicity, which are common underlying themes in many mental illnesses.

All of the essential labs recommended to assess underlying nutrient deficiencies contributing to behavioral and emotional concerns are included, for ease of practitioner ordering.  Each of the Mental M.A.P. Panels include a urine kryptopyrrole assessment.  

The Mental M.A.P. Panel 1.0 offers a comprehensive assessment of underlying physiological function including methylation, inflammation, and nutrient status.  The Mental M.A.P. Panel 2.0 offers everything in 1.0, as well as additional markers of neuroinflammation and nervous system function.  

The Mental M.A.P. Panel 3.0 also includes the active form of vitamin D, as well as additional markers of inflammation, blood sugar and detoxification.  

List of Exclusive Lab Panels Offered by DHA Laboratory

About the Lab

DHA Laboratory is an independent clinical chemistry laboratory specializing in functional and integrative medicine with a focus on mental and emotional conditions.

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Quality Control Process

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4 - 7 days
Shipment Tracking
Provides Tracking Number
Does Not Provide Tracking Number
Avg. Sample Processing
7 days
Consultation Availability
CLIA Certified
CAP Accredited
ISO 15189
COLA Accredited
Order, track, and receive results from 30+ labs in one place.