MyMicrobes Connects Users Based on Gastrointestinal Bacteria

 - Sep 10, 2011
References: popsci & nature
By checking and identifying your gastrointestinal bacteria against a growing databank of other guts, MyMicrobes will connect people with similar digestive tracts. Although microbial activity is rarely the impetus for lasting friendships, this website could drastically change the work of many medical scientists.

Developed by a not-for-profit German company, MyMicrobes is now accepting fecal samples sent in via mail and for a small fee ($2,100, to be precise), the company will sequence your gastrointestinal bacteria. There are two bright ideas at the core of the new social network: bringing people with similar stomach complications together and gleaning research information from the bacteria genomes they sequence.

As someone who suffers chronically from ulcers, I'm somewhat open to the idea of discussing my personal bout with like-minded others. Unfortunately, $2,100 and a stored sample of stool is a high price to pay for that privilege.