Resilient Biotics teams with CosmosID to drive microbiome discovery of respiratory tract

By Claudia Adrien

- Last updated on GMT

 The human respiratory tract microbiome is an important first line of defense against respiratory pathogens. @ Eoneren / Getty Images
The human respiratory tract microbiome is an important first line of defense against respiratory pathogens. @ Eoneren / Getty Images

Related tags microbiome Research

North Carolina microbiome platform company Resilient Biotics has partnered with Maryland-based CosmosID, a microbiome analytics firm, to advance respiratory health research and therapeutic development. The goal is to explore the intricate microbiome strains that colonize the respiratory tract tissues.

"Increasing size and resolution of microbiome databases is an important foundational step for downstream predictions of host-microbe interactions and diagnostic markers that can be applicable for respiratory health," Chris Belnap, CEO of Resilient Biotics, told NutraIngredients-USA.

The collaboration will combine CosmosID's next-generation sequencing services and advanced bioinformatic support to leverage sequencing of respiratory colonizers from the Resilient Biotics strain collection to delve deeper into the respiratory tract's microbiome composition and function.

"We hope to uncover new insights that can lead to innovative therapeutics and diagnostics, pushing the boundaries of microbiome research," said Manoj Dadlani, president of CosmosID.

Resilient Biotics has also identified key points in the analysis of DNA sequence data where AI can assist in making decisions so that organisms can be properly classified and predicted functions identified. The company is using this approach to refine the list of target candidates for further development in laboratory and in vivo​ experiments.

Antimicrobial resistance

Belnap, a microbiologist, co-founded Resilient Biotics with data scientist Greg Werner in 2017 and built a drug discovery platform to create microbiome-based biotherapeutics to prevent and treat respiratory infection in both animals and humans.

"The human respiratory tract microbiome is an important first line of defense against respiratory pathogens that lead to severe diseases like pneumonia, influenza and COVID-19," the company shared in a statement.

Since launch, Resilient Biotics has developed a suite of computational and laboratory tools to identify and validate therapeutic microbiome strains, with a vision to provide an alternative to antibiotics for the control of pathogens.

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is a global medical problem caused by the overuse of antibiotics, where germs such as bacteria and fungi can defeat the drugs intended to annihilate them. The World Health Organization estimates that bacterial AMR was responsible for 1.27 million human deaths worldwide in 2019. By 2030, economic complexities associated with AMR will lead to $3.4 trillion gross domestic product losses per year, according to the organization. 

Genomic sequencing

Dr. Rita Colwell, formerly a director of the National Science Foundation, established CosmosID in 2008 to develop computational methods that could leverage next-generation sequencing technologies to achieve strain-level detection of microorganisms in any complex sample.

Late last year, it partnered with Danish company Clinical Microbiomics to create the first microbiome service company with a global infrastructure offering state-of-the art multi-omics laboratories, advanced bioinformatics, applied AI and integrative system biology expertise.

"We are convinced this merger will make life easier for our clients," Dadlani told NutraIngredients​ at the time. "For the first time, it will be possible to ship samples to one location in each region for microbiome and metabolite when running global microbiome studies… we’re excited about the convenience and excellence this brings to our clients and the broader scientific community."

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