Tapping citizen-scientists for a novel gut check for a small fee
WASHINGTON (AP) - The bacterial zoo inside your gut could look very different if you are a vegetarian or an Atkins low-carbs dieter, a couch potato or an athlete, fat or thin.
Now for a fee - US$69 (S$84) and up - and a stool sample, the curious can find out just what is living in their intestines and take part in one of the hottest new fields in science.
Wait a minute: How many people really want to pay for the privilege of mailing such, er, intimate samples to scientists? A lot, hope the researchers running two novel citizen-science projects.
One, the American Gut Project, aims to enrol 10,000 people - and a bunch of their dogs and cats too - from around the country. The other, uBiome, separately aims to enrol nearly 2,000 people from anywhere in the world.