Tag Archives: microbiome

Conference Preview: Tracking our Bacterial Buddies

bacteria-600x381We are not alone. No, there haven’t been any extraterrestrial sightings lately, but there have been many advances in understanding the organisms that make up the ecosystem of ourselves. Did you know that you are supporting almost 10 times more bacterial cells than human cells? These bacterial collaborators have a profound affect on health and wellbeing. Jessica Richman, co-founder and CEO of uBiome, will be leading a breakout session at our upcoming QS Europe Conference on understanding the microbiome.

Access to microbiome data outside the official research and clinical context is bound to ruffle feathers, just as access to genomic data has created controversy for 23andMe and other companies. While the regulators argue, we’re keenly interested in finding out how microbiome info can be useful and interesting in our own tracking projects, and there is nobody better to work on this with than Jessica. Please join this session if you share our curiosity.

 The QS Europe Conference is just a few weeks away; come if you can!

 

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What would you do with your microbiome sequence?

If you had access to free microbiome sequencing tests, to detect and analyze bacteria living in the nose, mouth, skin, gastro-intestinal, and/or urogenital areas of the body, what experiments would you think up?

Would you compare oral bacteria in people with lots of cavities vs. people with no cavities, look for differences between people with clear skin and acne, or sample your gut flora as you travel or change your diet? These are just examples — there are countless ideas.

As it turns out, we DO have up to 100 free microbiome profiles being offered to the QS community, thanks to Pathogenica and QS sponsor Autodesk.  Now we just have to think up some cool experiments to do.

So the challenge is on – propose an experiment in the comments, and the top experiments will be done with some of the free tests. The deadline for submitting ideas is August 31. Also, all the data will be made openly available.

Check out some background reading on microbiome sequencing at the Human Microbiome Project website and Wikipedia.

Let’s come up with awesome ideas!

 

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