The human microbiome — meaning all of our microbes’ genes — will reshape theconsumerization of personalized medicine and diet. Following the human genome project, technological advancements have brought us much closer to acute precision in disease diagnosis and treatment.

How will microbiomes reshape what we eat?

Earlier this year, two researchers from the Weizmann Institute of Science published the results of a study from the Personalized Nutrition Project that looks at how individuals respond differently to food, based in part on the different microbiomes they host. The results found that there is no item of food whose effects are predictably universal for everyone, and that nutrition recommendations should be personalized.

Diagnostics using the microbiome

One company applying the microbiome to cancer diagnostics is Metabiomics, an early-stage molecular diagnostics company. Metabiomics is focused on creating a non-invasive stool test that analyzes the human gut microbiome for the earlier and more accurate identification of colon polyps and colorectal cancer. Developments in personalized medicine and the unique nature of the human microbiomeoffers an opportunity for Big Pharma to develop devices that no adjacent industry has the expertise to develop.

Microbiome innovation spotlight: Enterome and Evolve Biosystems

Microbes serve to defend against disease and strengthen the immune system, so disease prevention is a natural fit for microbiome innovation. Prevention represents a massive opportunity for healthcare companies — the probiotics market will be worth over $50 billion by 2020.

Therapeutics and diagnostics are two key applications for microbiome research.

What to expect in the future

Microbiome research could pave the road to a new era and approach toward prevention and disease management. Healthy individuals, or asymptomatic patients, are still reluctant to take action on prevention and, to some extent, disease interception, especially when symptoms are not yet mature. Companies like Johnson & Johnson and Dannon are leading the market in the microbiome area and we will begin to see more companies innovating in this space in the near future. Microbiome has already impacted consumers’ daily behaviors and has been adopted through various commercialized products.



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