Imagining that I am the head of a funding agency that is looking at research project proposals, and based on what we have learned this term, a research project that I would be interested in funding is one that studies how sanitation affects exposure to microbes when we are young. I think it would be interesting to gain a better understanding of the interactions and mechanisms behind establishing the microbiota at a young age. This would give us a better understanding of what behaviors are important to keep, change, or actually stop doing.
As we have seen throughout this class, having a diverse microbiota is essential to human health and thus understanding how to maintain or establish this is crucial to understanding how to have better health and avoid potentially dangerous diseases. By establishing a better microbiota at a younger age, it may lead to less risks for microorganism influenced diseases later on in life.
Understanding more about this can also impact healthcare decisions, both in a professional healthcare setting and in day to day healthcare related decisions. For example, understanding more about how current healthcare practices influence the ability to develop our microbiota may lead to changes in protocols. More specifically, because much of our microbiota is initially developed at a young age, this may mean changes in hospital (and home life) procedures following birth. By having a greater understanding of the interactions and mechanisms behind establishing a healthy microbiome equilibrium, we can make more informed and guided decisions within healthcare.