How Gut Microbiome and Genetics-Based Personalization is a Game Changer to Strengthen Immunity

Ranjan Sinha

October 11, 2020

Precision medicine is often spoken about in the context of genomics, but it is much broader and deeper than that.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) defines precision medicine as "an emerging approach for disease treatment and prevention that takes into account individual variability in genes, environment, and lifestyle for each person." 

In a recent survey 44 health system executives were asked to rank five emerging Health IT categories that they expected would have the biggest impact on healthcare delivery in five years. At number three, 54% of health system executives felt that genomics would have a major impact.

At its roots, personalized medicine uses an individual’s genetic profile to design the best therapeutic approach. It provides insights such as the individual’s susceptibility level l to a particular disease or how they may respond to a particular drug. Traditional medicine calls for deciding treatments based on empirical data. In comparison, personalized medicine takes into account that no two patients are alike.

The field of precision medicine, though comparatively new, has the potential for clinicians to offer much more than the current "one-size-fits-all" care model. With the rise in artificial intelligence and an increasing body of evidence pointing at the need for a more holistic approach to chronic health problems, personalized medicine programs like Digbi Health may pave the way for a healthier world.

Within precision medicine, models that leverage not only an individual’s genetic profile but, gut microbiome as well to design personalized nutrition and wellness programs are poised to be a game-changer. Evidence suggests that the gut microbiome can influence host physiology by regulating the gut-brain axis, metabolism, and immunity by signaling important bioactive metabolites generated by the microbiome itself.

Observational studies show that disturbances in normal gut microbial profiles are associated with a host of disease states, including metabolic, cardiovascular, inflammatory, neurodegenerative, and cancer. With the majority of our immune system residing in the gut, it stands to reason that the gut microbiome exerts an influence on immune responses. A healthy gut biome is necessary to keep our immune system in good shape.

Personalized medicine comes with the potential to tailor treatments with higher safety margins to bring about the best response. Keeping healthcare costs lower is an additional benefit.

Improving outcomes with gut biome-based personalized medicine

Experts believe that gut microbiome-based therapies may be a part of mainstream clinical practice in five to ten years. Successful applications of personalized nutrition and wellness initiatives have been observed in the context of cancer, Obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease, to name a few. In addition to its diagnostic and therapeutic potential, the human microbiome is also at the center of diet-based disease interventions. Genetics and gut microbiome-based therapeutics can target diseases through personalized nutrition, genetic profiling, microbial metabolic profile, microbiota precision editing, microbiota transplantation, and intestinal barrier modulation.

Digbi’s Proven Care personalized nutrition and wellness program is one such program, designed based on your genetic profile and the gut microbiome. Along with guided exercise, it can be a great tool in fighting Obesity, reducing comorbidities, and boosting immunity.

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