The intake – a key moment for your study roadmap
The Intake — your first official contact with the multidisciplinary team at Microbiota Center Amsterdam (MiCA) — is a personal dialogue aimed at gaining insight into how your study is (or could be) set up, and how microbiota research may help you with the results. We often encounter clinicians and other clients who are aware that microbiota could be interesting for their field of research or project, but they are often not exactly sure how relevant and/or significant it could be. The intake is not a standard procedure and evolves on a case-to-case basis, and as each study is different, therefore each intake session will be an individual, tailor-made session.
The intake session — which takes place with either a microbiologist or a medical biologist — is a question and answer session aimed at mutual understanding. This dialogue comprises your study requirements, hypothesis and expectations and MiCA’s insights into the potential role of microbiota and certain testing requirements to enable satisfactory results. These include, for example, guidance on the number of subjects in a study cohort in order to generate a meaningful conclusion.
The intake conversation can also help to establish if the microbiota analysis in the context of your study is a realistic proposition, and helps to clarify expectations on both sides regarding the analysis and report output.
We also provide practical advice on sample collection (how and when when to take samples) and how best to physically deliver them to MiCA.
Bacteria and fungi
MiCA is one of the very few microbiota testing centres which analyses both bacteria (16s) and fungi (ITS). This can certainly be a recommended approach for certain studies, and during the intake it can become clear whether or not this two-pronged approach is recommended or not.
Our intake experts have been closely involved in many previous microbiota studies. This not only gives a good foundation of knowledge in microbiology, but also in bioinformatics and life sciences. The combination of knowledge and experience in all three of these fields, not only helps on advising regarding microbiota sampling practicalities, but also means we can give consultation on how you might set up your study in the first place in order to optimally benefit from the best testing set-up. So the earlier the intake conversation, the better, in terms of your clinical trials and experimental set-up.
This consultation, which touches on microbiology, bioinformatics and an understanding of the clinical setting, makes your intake with MiCA a useful practical start to what often becomes a challenging and inspirational diagnostic journey.