building a picture of Latin American microbiomes

I’m in my moist lab on the Microbial Genomics Laboratory of the Pasteur Institute of Montevideo in Uruguay, which I arrange in 2019. Most of my group’s tasks begin right here, however many transfer into bioinformatics analysis on the opposite facet of the hall, or by way of distant connections to computing programs elsewhere on the planet — usually on the Wellcome Sanger Institute in Hinxton, UK, the place I’m additionally affiliated.

One long-term analysis objective is to raised perceive the intestine microbiome — the composition and steadiness of micro organism within the intestine — and the way it varies throughout populations, to assist deal with many situations. It’s particularly vital for Latin American nations, as a result of present human-microbiome databases come from wealthier nations — in North America, Europe and China, particularly — the place a lot of the sampling has been completed. This results in bias. You’ll be able to’t make dependable medical choices on intestine well being for a Latin American individual with European information. Latin America has a number of the highest weight problems charges on the planet, so a greater understanding may assist policymakers.

I lead a consortium of scientists in Uruguay, Argentina, Chile, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Paraguay, Costa Rica, Peru and French Guiana. We collect information on microbiomes in these extremely heterogeneous nations. I see it as a puzzle; we have to discover items from throughout the area earlier than we are able to put the image collectively.

My long-term dream is to assist different scientific communities (in Japanese Europe, southeast Asia or Africa, for instance) to gather and analyse microbiome information, in order that medical interventions make sense for native populations, diets and cultures.

As soon as I’ve completed that, maybe I can return to cooking — certainly one of my hobbies — or rising greens. My father is a farmer in Cardona within the southwest of Uruguay, and I go to usually. It’s satisfying doing worthwhile analysis that’s particular to this continent.