In the last few decades, DNA analysis has transformed the field of microbiology and gut health testing. The Human Microbiome Project and research around the globe have characterized the GI microbiome. More than ever before, we are keenly aware of the health benefits and disease risks brought about by the microorganisms that inhabit the GI tract. At Perpetual Wellbeing we are now able to offer Microbiome Testing to help us further understand a number of conditions.
The Complete Microbiome Mapping Test was designed to assess a patient’s microbiome from a single stool sample, with particular attention to microbes that cause disease or that disrupt normal microbial balance and contribute to perturbations in the GI flora and contribute to illness.
The Microbiome Testing panel is a comprehensive collection of microbial targets as well as immune and digestive markers. It screens for pathogenic bacteria, commensal bacteria, opportunistic pathogens, fungi, viruses, and parasites. The Complete Microbiome Mapping Test also includes a comprehensive assessment of gastrointestinal health functional markers that are often not provided by other stool tests on the market, such as:
- Calprotectin – Calprotectin is an important protein released by neutrophils; a type of white blood cell. When there is inflammation in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, neutrophils move to the area and release calprotectin, resulting in increased levels in the stool. This test measures the level of calprotectin in stool as a way to detect inflammation in the intestines. Importantly, the test differentiates between IBD and IBS.
- Pancreatic Elastase – Elastase is an important enzyme produced by special (exocrine) tissue in the pancreas. This test measures the amount of elastase in stool to help evaluate whether a person’s pancreas is functioning properly. Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency occurs when there is inadequate amount of proteolytic enzymes released and transported to the small intestine for proper food digestion and absorption of nutrients.
- Secretory IgA – Secretory IgA is secreted by mucosal tissue and represents the first line of defense of the (GI) mucosa and is central to the normal function of the (GI) tract as an immune barrier. Low levels can influence the elevated presence of parasites and/or dysbiotic bacteria to occur.
- Beta-Glucoronidase – is an enzyme produced by colonocytes as well as by anaerobic gut bacteria (particularly E. coli). It is an enzyme that breaks down complex carbohydrates. It can be seen elevated in (GI) infections, particularly enterocolitis.
- Short Chain Fatty Acids – Short-chain fatty acids are produced by the friendly bacteria in your gut. Short-chain fatty acids may also play an important role in health and disease. They may reduce the risk of inflammatory diseases including type 2 diabetes, obesity, heart disease and other conditions.
- Zonulin – An important marker for leaky gut and other autoimmune disorders. Elevated levels of a zonulin family protein (ZFP) have been associated with metabolic syndrome and obesity; conditions that have been linked to increased intestinal permeability (“leaky gut”).
- Anti-gliadin igA-Gliadin – Gliadin is a component of gluten, the protein found in wheat and other field grass grains such as barley, malt and rye. The presence of anti-gliadin antibodies can indicate an immune response (in the gut) to gluten in the diet.
- Steatocrit – Steatocrit when elevated is indicative of fat malabsorption resulting in steatorrhea. This may generally result from pancreatic exocrine insufficiency, gut dysbiosis or a high fat diet.
- Abdominal cramps or pain
- leaky gut symptoms