Genova Diagnostics is a global clinical laboratory that supports healthcare providers in the personalised treatment and prevention of chronic disease. Genova Diagnostics is a resource for innovative laboratory testing, professional consultations in laboratory medicine, and laboratory diagnostics webinars.
Genova are partnering with Nutri Advanced for ‘The Science of Health with Dr. Jeffrey Bland’. Hosted in County Hall, London, on 15th June, The Science of Health promises to be the biggest single day functional medicine event of 2019. Tickets are available here.
Genova’s tests range from gastrointestinal and immunology profiles, nutritional profiles, endocrinology profiles, genomics profiles and environmental profiles.
Genova’s gastrointestinal profiles range from gut immunology profile to full GI Effects® Comprehensive Stool Profile.
The GI Effects® Comprehensive Stool Profile is a broad assessment of the gastrointestinal tract that offers valuable insight into digestive function, intestinal inflammation, and the intestinal microbiome.
It can reveal important information about the root cause of many common gastrointestinal symptoms such as gas, bloating, indigestion, abdominal pain, diarrhoea, and constipation. This stool analysis utilises biomarkers such as Calprotectin to differentiate between Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). In addition, Genova's GI Effects test can be used to evaluate patients with a clinical history that suggests a gastrointestinal infection or dysbiosis.
This test features biomarkers in areas of digestion / absorption, inflammation / immunology and gut microbiome. In addition, this test utilises comprehensive testing for parasites via microscopic faecal specimen examination for ova and parasites (O&P) as well as 6 Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) targets for Cryptosporidium spp., Cyclospora cayetanensis, Dientamoeba fragilis, Entamoeba histolytica, and Giardia as well as subtyping of Blastocystis spp.
Gut microbes are codependent with one another and with their human host, and the health of one affects the other. A sizeable volume of research associates a dysbiotic or imbalanced gut microbiome with multiple disease states both within and outside of the GI tract. The diverse metabolic activities of the microbiome ultimately impact the human host, and the activities of the human host ultimately affect the health of their microbiome.
With more than 95% of commensal gut organisms being anaerobic, they may be difficult to recover by traditional aerobic culture techniques
In this test Genova assesses a set of 24 genera/species that map to 7 major phyla as well as bacterial and mycology cultures.
The 24 commensal bacteria give an insight into general patterns and trends. There are key bacteria strains that we can look at which give us increased clinical utility:
Methanobrevibacter smithii is the predominant methanogen in patients with constipation-predominant IBS. Studies show that number and proportion of M. Smithii in the stool correlate well with methane dominant SIBO. (Kim et al 2012)
Desulfovibrio piger is a Sulphate Reducing Bacteria which utilises lactate and hydrogen as substrate to produce hydrogen sulphide. An altered gut environment towards dysbiosis may promote opportunistic growth of Gram-negative members of families of Desulfovibrio. These bacteria tend to be resistant to broad spectrum antibiotics, so these bacteria may bloom in the setting of repeat antibiotic use. Consumption of meat and high sulphur or sulphate containing diet could promote the production of hydrogen sulphide. Some studies suggest that growth of sulphate reducing bacteria may be favoured under inflammatory conditions. (Singh et al 2015)
Akkermansia muciniphila is a colonic mucus-degrading bacteria which has been inversely associated with intestinal permeability, obesity, diabetes, inflammation and metabolic disorders. Activities of A. muciniphila are associated with increase of mucus thickness. (Zhou et al 2017)
Hydrogen Sulfide in Physiology and Diseases of the Digestive Tract (Singh et al 2015) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5023273/
Strategies to promote abundance of Akkermansia muciniphila, an emerging probiotic in the gut, evidence from dietary intervention studies. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1756464617301627
Methanobrevibacter smithii is the predominant methanogen in patients with constipation-predominant IBS and methane on breath. (Kim et al 2012) https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10620-012-2197-1