Your Intestinal Flora: Get to Know Them!
How many species of gut bacteria do you have? Can you count them? What are their names? Get to know them!
Or so say researchers, more or less, at the University of Graz, Austria, in an awkwardly worded press release. Seems the university has just purchased Roche’s next-generation Genome Sequencer FLX System (not to be confused with the Bowflex System) and plan to characterize the composition of all protective intestinal flora with it.*
That means investigators may be sifting through 40,000 different species of bacteria to identify those that protect against opportunistic intestinal infections, like infection due to Clostridium difficile. Most intestinal bacteria have not been characterized, according to the press release; however, the Roche machine evidently facilitates the job by enabling ultra-fast sequencing.
And once the job is done, we can all say, “I was nothing, nowhere, nobody, until I got to know my intestinal flora.”
*As far as I can tell, Roche’s machine costs $3000-$9000, and a low-end Bowflex System is about $1000.