Microbiome – Frequently Asked Questions
Below you will find a list of frequently asked questions related specifically to the microbiome sub-study, titled BioNUGUT. If you have general questions about Alberta’s Tomorrow Project, please visit our Common Questions page.
If you have a question you don’t see here, please get in touch with us.
Thank you for being a part of Alberta’s largest research project!
Our bodies are host to a huge array of microorganisms, also known as microbes, which play a significant factor in our overall health. The human microbiome is composed of all the bacteria and other microbes that live in and on the human body.
A microbe or microorganism is a very small living thing that can only be seen with a microscope. Our human microbiome is made up of trillions of bacteria, a type of microbe, which researchers have discovered play a significant role in keeping us healthy.
BioNUGUT is the name of the microbiome study Alberta’s Tomorrow Project is involved in. Your participation in the BioNUGUT sub-study does not affect your participation in Alberta’s Tomorrow Project in any way. Alberta’s Tomorrow Project has partnered with Dr. Jane Shearer, Associate Professor, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Calgary, to explore how the trillions of bacteria living on and within us can be used to signal ongoing health.
Alberta’s Tomorrow Project is undertaking a feasibility study to determine whether this microbiome study can be rolled out to the entire cohort. The selection process was completely random, and your involvement in this sub-study does not in any way affect your participation in Alberta’s Tomorrow Project. Your participation is and always will remain completely voluntary.
There have been some findings in the broader research community linking gut bacteria to things like obesity, diet preference, and mental health, but the way the microbiome impacts our health is not well understood. There is still so much to investigate, and your participation will potentially allow researchers to discover more about how the microbiome plays a factor in the maintenance of health, or the development of disease. In addition, you are one of the lucky few who get to take part in the feasibility study before Alberta’s Tomorrow Project considers rolling this out to the broader cohort of 55,000.
Unfortunately, participants were randomly invited to take part. We cannot take volunteers at this point in time, but we thank you for your interest!
Please follow the directions on the cardboard collection container, and reschedule your appointment if you have not had a bowel movement in the day before your appointment. If you are still having issues, please contact us at 1-877-919-9292 so we can assist you directly.
You can log in to our website at http://myatphub.ca/ to change your appointment. You may also call us at 1-877-919-9292 to let us know.
If you are taking antibiotics, we would ask that you let us know when you expect to complete your course of antibiotics. One of the requirements to take part in this sub-study is that you have not taken antibiotics within 3 months of providing your sample. If you are not on antibiotics, please do not change your diet, and continue taking your medication regularly.
The C-DHQ II queries 165 questions of which 153 are food questions, 10 questions are related to nutritional supplement use (vitamins, minerals and herbal supplements), one question asks about the cooking of meat and one asks about vegetarian diets. One hundred and forty-three food questions are queried with portion sizes.
For more information, please visit the following website https://epi.grants.cancer.gov/DHQ/forms/canadian/
The CDHQ-II survey will take you approximately 45 minutes to complete.
The IPAQ is an abbreviation for the International Physical Activity Questionnaire. The purpose of the questionnaire is to provide a set of well-developed instruments that can be used internationally to obtain comparable estimates of physical activity. There are two versions of the questionnaire. The short version is suitable for use in national and regional surveillance systems and the long version provides more detailed information often required in research work or for evaluation purposes. The long version produces estimates of physical activity in four domains: work, leisure, transportation and household.
By providing a stool sample, blood sample, and information about your diet and activity, researchers will be better able to determine how differing diets and activity levels affect your microbiome. All results will be aggregated and studied on a group, rather than individual, basis.
No, you can complete either one at your one pace, and in multiple sittings. Your location will be saved in each online survey so you can continue where you left off. You do not need to complete either in a certain order, either.
The IPAQ will take you approximately 15 minutes to complete.
The Canadian Diet History Questionnaire II is a modified version of the American Diet History Questionnaire, which has been adapted for use in Canada. Modifications are minor, but reflect the differences in food availability and fortification practices in both countries.
Through the collaborative efforts of Dr. Amy Subar and staff at the Risk Factor Assessment Branch, and Dr. Ilona Csizmadi and colleagues in the Division of Population Health and Information at Alberta Health Services, in Canada, the DHQ was adapted for use in Canada.
We recommend using Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, or Safari. Participants using Internet Explorer may experience technical issues.
You may download any of the preferred browsers by clicking the browser icons above.
Yes, however the survey works best on a desktop or laptop computer.