Hello readers, I’m very encouraged- I’ve sent a short summary of findings based on sequence data from Project: Cancer-Fighting Gut Bacteria to Dr. Schiestl at UCLA, and he’s agreed that it’s worth publishing! There’s a lot of supporting data from the literature, and I’m planning some in silico (on computer) experiments to bolster the findings as well.
If I can arrange for support I’ll see about including a separate experiment I have planned which would look at systemic (body-wide) effects of bacteria like the Lactobacillus strain used in the project. I need to get permission to do this, since it would involve analysis of blood (my blood! I plan to volunteer as guinea pig) taken before and after ingestion of the Lactobacillus probiotic. It’s admittedly a kind of risky idea, but less so than the researcher who ingested the pathogenic bacterium Helicobacter pylori and photographed his stomach before and after to demonstrate that H. pylori is involved in gastric ulcers. I am not certain that, like the H. pylori study, this work will result in a Nobel prize, but it would certainly be novel and groundbreaking if it works and ties in with the results of Project: Cancer-Fighting Gut Bacteria the way I suspect it could.
My work is publishable whether or not this additional work is included, though, so stay tuned for updates!
[October 22, 2014: Dr. S. says I can use blood from a clinical trial planned in 2015- so I may not need to be a guinea pig after all! This will require serious funding to analyze samples from as many as 40 people, though, so I will have to figure out if I can write a small grant. Given the difficulty in getting funding for joint US-Canadian projects, it may be more difficult to find funding than to actually do the project! While I try to figure out this issue I’ll go ahead and write up what I have so far, since I don’t want the work to just sit around, and it will be a very nice paper.]