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Enterome: the metagenotyping strategy

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Published on Jan 9, 2014

Enterome is utilizing the information harnessed in the microbiome to improve overall patient care. To do this, Enterome profiles the microbial genes present in one's gut and uses this information to separate patients with similar clinical profiles into groups called metagenotypes.

Let's focus on obesity which is not only defined by a tremendous increase in body weight but also characterized by altered clinical and biological parameters related to the metabolic syndrome diseases like elevated fasting serum lipids levels, insulin resistance, low-grade inflammation, increased cardiovascular risks. But obesity has been also shown to be characterized by reduced gut microbial gene richness (Nature 2013;500(7464):585-8). The efficacy of energy harvest from food is determined by a well-balanced composition of the gut microbiota. Specific dietary intervention can impact the composition of the microbiome and by consequence improve the gut microbial gene richness.

In this hypothetical scenario, a patient suffering from obesity sees his doctor to take a decision regarding the actions to lead to improve his state of health: decreasing body weight but also breaking down insulin resistance. The doctor prescribes his patient a gut metagenotype test to check his gut microbial richness and to decide the appropriate decision of intervention.

The patient is given a take-home stool collection kit. Once collected, the sample is returned to the laboratory by regular mail at room temperature. There, DNA is extracted from the stool and sequenced to provide a profile of the whole microbial genes present in the stool. Low or high richness of the bacteria population is determined and specific metagenotypes which represent distinct sets of microbial genes are searched.

These metagenotypes may be associated with particular profiles of diseases and be a tool of prediction of the efficacy of a medical intervention. This will help the doctor design an effective personalized treatment plan. In this case, our patient's metagenotype actually shows reduced richness of the gut microbiome.

So our hypothetical patient returns to see his doctor. Based on the metagenotype test results, the doctor might prescribe a medical diet, prebiotics, drugs or other intervention like bariatric surgery that has been successful amongst obese patients with the same metagenotype and that can promote the development of a healthier more diverse microbiome.

The patient leaves the doctor's office with a plan of action tailored to his specific condition, thanks to a detailed profiling of his gut microbiome using metagenotypes.

Profiling the gut microbiome can be a powerful tool for many uses related to patient care. Based on its proprietary innovation, Enterome can design multiple microbiome-related healthcare tools for prevention, diagnosis, patient stratification or companion diagnostics, disease or treatment monitoring, and development of new therapeutics.

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