AnimalBiome Selects Loop Genomics to Expand Microbiome Testing Capabilities to
Support Clinically Actionable Decision-Making for Veterinarians
Company deploys new long-read sequencing technology and protocols
to provide unparalleled insight into the status of gut health for dogs and cats
SAN JOSE, California (Feb 15, 2019)- AnimalBiome, the leading companion animal microbiome company, has selected Loop Genomics 16s Microbiome kits to help it expanded its microbiome testing capabilities to provide veterinarians with practical, clinically-actionable insights regarding the gut health of dogs and cats. Proactive management of the gut microbiome holds great potential to reduce the incidence of chronic illnesses, including Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Metabolic Syndrome, among others. In fact, more than 50% of pets will develop a condition associated with an imbalance in the microbiome in their lifetime.
By selecting the Loop Genomics’ technology AnimalBiome was able to leverage in-house Illuminasequencing instruments they already had and deliver long-read sequencing results at a fraction of the cost of most other systems with a much lower error rate.
AnimlaBiome’s scientific team, led by founder Holly Ganz, PhD, has used Loop’s technology to deploy new testing protocols to characterize bacterial and fungal species that may be present in the microbiome and affecting a pet’s health.
Because species-level identifications are important for identifying the presence of pathogens, AnimalBiome is now leveraging recent breakthroughs by Loop Genomicsto sequence full length 16S rRNA and 18S rRNA genes on the Illumina platform. This testing service, the Gut Function + Pathogen Test ($145), available on its own and as an upgrade to the Microbiome Assessment, allows AnimalBiome to identify both bacteria and fungi to the species level, distinguishing beneficial bacteria from clinically relevant pathogens such as Clostridium difficileand Clostridiumperfringens. In addition, this test identifies fungi and helps clinicians assess whether there is a yeast overgrowth. Veterinarians are using insights from this new test to guide further pathogen testing, antibiotic screening, and recommend treatment plans.
By leveraging the Loop Genomics’ platform AnimalBiome can provide an affordable Microbiome test identifying the presence and relative abundance of bacterial groups based on sequencing the entire V1-V9 region of the 16s molecule with phasing. They have built a massive reference database of pet dog and cat gut microbiome samples to identify imbalances and over-representation of certain bacterial groups relative to healthy dogs and cats. Veterinarians are provided with actionable insights to guide dietary, supplement and other lifestyle changes.
According to Tuval Ben Yehezkel PhD, CEO and founder of Loop Genomics, “We are proud have enabled AnimalBiome to be the first company to bring sequencing-based microbiome testing to the companion animal market, and we look forward to continuing to support them as they turn the latest advances in genetic sequencing into products to help dogs and cats live healthy and full lives.”
Notes to editors:
Founded in late 2015, Loop Genomics is a San Francisco bay area company that offers a novel technology for long-read sequencing. In addition to its transcriptome offerings, the company offers various kits and services for long read microbiome sequencing and long read microbial genome assembly.
Founded in late 2016, AnimalBiome is an emerging startup company that offers a novel approach for companion animal health rooted in the science of the gut microbiome. In addition to its microbiome testing products, the company offers a gut microbiome restoration supplement with material sourced directly from healthy pets to restore gut function and overall health by introducing missing beneficial microbes that may have been lost as a result of exposure to pathogens, antibiotics, NSAIDs, and food additives. Last year AnimalBiome was recognized by both Purina and Mars PetCare as one of the most innovative start-ups in the industry.