Newsletter

CMIT published a periodic online newsletter highlighting new and exciting studies, research initiatives, and events to help connect the microbiome research community.

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January 2020

Don’t you, forget about the viruses

BY KATE JEFFREY

Viruses are the most abundant biological entities on earth, and recent estimates suggest more than 380 trillion of them (10 times the number of bacteria) inhabit us – seemingly without causing much harm at all. Given that the name virus was coined from the same Latin word meaning slimy liquid or poison, this new understanding of a commensal, possibly beneficial “virome” is immediately surprising to many.

Read the January 2020 issue

November 2019

Closing the global microbiome gap: OpenBiome’s program to accelerate the development of microbiome-based therapies for global health

BY MAJDI OSMAN & CAROLINE ZELLMER

Our understanding of the human microbiome is leading to the development of new therapies for seemingly intractable diseases such as C. difficile infection, inflammatory bowel diseases, obesity and even autism. However, there is a rapidly widening gap between high-income countries and low/middle income countries (LMICs) where the benefits of our growing understanding of the field could potentially save millions of lives per year.

Read the November 2019 issue

September 2019

Leave “Parachute Science” Behind When Jumping Into Global Microbiome Research

BY REPRESENTATIVES OF THE GLOBAL MICROBIOME CONSERVANCY

Awareness is growing, but still today researchers from high-income countries sometimes conduct research that relies on analyzing samples collected in low-income countries without affording any benefit to local scientists or community. This practice of “dropping in” on another country to take whatever is needed to further research, termed “parachute science”, can apply to any scientific field.

Read the September 2019 issue

July 2019

Moving Microbiome Research from the Bench to the Bedside: Challenges and Opportunities

BY ASHWIN N. ANANTHAKRISHNAN, MD, MPH

Nearly every month, we see studies linking alterations in the composition of the gut microbiome, crudely termed “dysbiosis”, with one disease or the other. The spectrum of diseases linked to such alterations range from inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) to autism to obesity to depression…

Read the July 2019 issue

June 2019

We should share the data generated during clinical research, not just the key findings.

BY ERIC ALM

Participating in a clinical trial is a big step. Patients understand that new therapeutics can’t be developed without trials, but there’s no guarantee that the intervention being tested will be effective, safe, or even available when the trial is over…

Read the June 2019 issue

November 2018

Diversity matters… but maybe not in our guts

BY ERIC ALM

We seem to have collectively agreed that ‘more is better’ when it comes to microbiome diversity. However, there’s not much evidence that within the “normal” spectrum of microbiome diversity — i.e. what’s observed in healthy individuals — that having more diversity is better for you…

Read the November 2018 issue

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To develop the spectrum of different therapies needed for patients with microbiome-associated disease, CMIT needs to continue to attract the best minds to join our community.