After a residency in Internal Medicine and fellowship in Endocrinology at the AMC-UvA and a postdoctoral fellowship on glycobiology at UC San Diego (prof. Jeff Esko, department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine), Dr Nieuwdorp started his own translational research group (currently 10 PhD students, 1 postdoctoral fellow, 1 technician) focusing on translational research aimed at dissecting the causal role of (small) intestinal bacterial strains to reverse insulin resistance, adipose tissue inflammation and cardiovascular disease.
1/ The field of gut microbiota studies has rapidly evolved in recent years towards clinical applications. What are according to you the following steps of this trend?
I see the following 5 years as crucial. I believe those years will focus on testing the validity of the intestinal microbiota as a tool for diagnosis. In my opinion this clinical application will greatly enhance clinical risk stratification. Therapeutics will evolve in the coming 5 to 10 years. It should be more difficult for this side of clinical applications because of Good Manufacturing Practice rules (GMP)… A lot of this depends on research and new discoveries still to be made in the field.
2/ This edition of the GMFH Summit has a specific focus on clinical aspects. How can research best accompany clinical studies in the field of gut microbiota?
The best way for research to accompany clinical studies is for researchers to team up with pharmaceutically trained (Phase I – IV) clinicians/researchers to maximize the outcomes of trials.
3/ What is your greatest expectation from the GMFH Summit 2014? What are, for you, the main benefits of the event?
From this edition of the Gut Microbiota for Health Summit, I expect consensus about the way to use good clinical phenotyping. I think this is key to increase the yield of involved bacterial strains.
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