According to the World Health Organization, depression is now the leading cause of disability in the United States and is rapidly becoming more common in the developing world. This increase in depression rates matches the rise of other diseases frequently considered to be Western, such as inflammatory bowel disease, multiple sclerosis, and diabetes, all of which, we now know, have both immune and microbial components.

The development of probiotics, which are living bacteria or yeasts used to confer a health benefit on the host, has paralleled our understanding of how the complex interactions in microbiota impact the host's health and recovery from disease. There are numerous probiotic foods marketed today and many probiotic strains are commercially available. In the near future, pharmaceuticals made from probiotic bacteria will be a common thing.

Unfortunately the viability of bacteria depends on the intrinsic properties of the strain. We often overlook the quality of the produc...
According to the World Health Organization, depression is now the leading cause of disability in the United States and is rapidly becoming more common in the developing world. This increase in depression rates matches the rise of other diseases frequently considered to be Western, such as inflammatory bowel disease, multiple sclerosis, and diabetes, all of which, we now know, have both immune and microbial components.

The development of probiotics, which are living bacteria or yeasts used to confer a health benefit on the host, has paralleled our understanding of how the complex interactions in microbiota impact the host's health and recovery from disease. There are numerous probiotic foods marketed today and many probiotic strains are commercially available. In the near future, pharmaceuticals made from probiotic bacteria will be a common thing.

Unfortunately the viability of bacteria depends on the intrinsic properties of the strain. We often overlook the quality of the production process. The production of live bacteria requires expertise and stringent quality controls. Only a few companies in the world possess the know-how to produce and process live bacteria in a way that ensures that what is on the label is inside the package: a pure, live, stable, and consistent bacteria preparation.

ProbioFarm wants to shift this status-quo and develop a game-changing probiotic farming technology that will contribute to drop the production costs and make probiotic supplements and nutraceuticals affordable, for the benefit of society. In order to achieve our goal, we will develop an innovative methodology for the farming of different strains (Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium mainly) of probiotic bacteria, taking an unconventional personalized microbiological approach, combined with synthetic biology.

The project can be split in three phases:
Firstly we will be gathering microbiota samples of a wide variety of healthy individuals and determine a microbial pattern (species, relative and absolute quantity, symbiosis, etc). We will create a stool bank.
Secondly we will be focusing on the specific biorequirements the selected species need to thrive and multiply. Once determined, we will try to create synthetic equivalents pf the prebiotic substrate.
Thirdly, we will develop and standardize the farming methods. Bank sample --> Amplification --> Fermentation scale-up --> Harvesting --> Freeze drying. We will focus on efficiency, reproducibility and
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