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Sun Jan 29, 2012, 09:03 PM

Bacteria colors your poop to diagnose what ails you

What if diagnosing salmonella or colorectal cancer was as easy as looking in the toilet? Scientists and designers are collaborating to create a new type of bacteria that beautifies your fecal matter while diagnosing your illness.
We mentioned E. chromi, the color-coded designer bacteria made from E. coli, back in June. When brought to genetically engineered life, the bacteria will have a number of uses, including testing groundwater and as a chemical-free food coloring. But none of them hit my juvenile funny bone while making me pray this becomes a reality quite like the poop-coloring possibilities.

The idea is that, someday soon, you'll be able to drink a probiotic shake filled with E. chromi. The modified E. coli contain genes capable of producing color. When the bacteria react with certain enzymes, proteins, and chemicals in your gastrointestinal tract, they will produce certain colors, making diagnosis as simple as reading a color chart.



Just make sure you don't eat any crayons when testing your guts, or you'll skew the results.

http://digg.com/newsbar/topnews/bacteria_colors_your_poop_to_diagnose_what_ails_you

35 replies, 11395 views

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Arrow 35 replies Author Time Post
Reply Bacteria colors your poop to diagnose what ails you (Original post)
n2doc Jan 2012 OP
Xipe Totec Jan 2012 #1
LiberalEsto Jan 2012 #2
FailureToCommunicate Jan 2012 #17
no_hypocrisy Jan 2012 #3
Demeter Jan 2012 #5
silverweb Jan 2012 #27
dixiegrrrrl Feb 2012 #32
silverweb Feb 2012 #33
silverweb Feb 2012 #34
napoleon_in_rags Jan 2012 #4
SemperEadem Jan 2012 #13
thecrow Jan 2012 #18
CTyankee Feb 2012 #28
napoleon_in_rags Feb 2012 #29
CTyankee Feb 2012 #30
napoleon_in_rags Feb 2012 #31
mysuzuki2 Jan 2012 #6
saras Jan 2012 #7
izquierdista Jan 2012 #8
Arctic Dave Jan 2012 #9
HuckleB Jan 2012 #10
Gormy Cuss Jan 2012 #20
HuckleB Jan 2012 #21
Gormy Cuss Jan 2012 #22
HuckleB Jan 2012 #23
mysuzuki2 Jan 2012 #24
HuckleB Jan 2012 #25
mdavies013 Jan 2012 #11
JesterCS Jan 2012 #12
BlancheSplanchnik Jan 2012 #14
FailureToCommunicate Jan 2012 #16
BlancheSplanchnik Jan 2012 #26
dickthegrouch Jan 2012 #15
A Simple Game Jan 2012 #19
onecent Feb 2012 #35

Response to n2doc (Original post)

Sun Jan 29, 2012, 09:09 PM

1. No beets or steamed spinach either...

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Response to n2doc (Original post)

Sun Jan 29, 2012, 09:11 PM

2. What if you get a rainbow effect?

 

Could that be caused by eating too many crayons?

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Response to LiberalEsto (Reply #2)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 12:07 PM

17. Then you know it's not Santorum?

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Response to n2doc (Original post)

Sun Jan 29, 2012, 09:16 PM

3. The only "color test" I know for stool is that if

your stool has the color and consistency of coffee grounds, you have colo-rectal bleeding.

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Response to no_hypocrisy (Reply #3)

Sun Jan 29, 2012, 09:24 PM

5. Too much chocolate can do the same

 

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Response to no_hypocrisy (Reply #3)

Tue Jan 31, 2012, 04:36 PM

27. Some other things cause similar results.

[font color="navy" face="Verdana"]Pepto-Bismol is famous for causing black stools, as are iron supplements.

Conversely, stools that are very pale and clay colored indicate liver disease.

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Response to silverweb (Reply #27)

Sun Feb 12, 2012, 01:55 PM

32. What color of clay colored?

There is red clay ( lots of that around here)
yellow clay
brown clay
gray clay

I always wondered what they meant by "clay colored".

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Response to dixiegrrrrl (Reply #32)

Mon Feb 13, 2012, 03:07 AM

33. Good point!

[font color="navy" face="Verdana"]The color would be very pale, a light tan, gray or even yellowish.

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Response to dixiegrrrrl (Reply #32)


Response to n2doc (Original post)

Sun Jan 29, 2012, 09:18 PM

4. Is this for real? That's pretty awesome actually.

Colonoscopy is a horribly invasive procedure, you have to drink all that stuff and have a tube shoved in there, and it costs thousands. Looking for the cancer through a simple shake is a world of good news.

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Response to napoleon_in_rags (Reply #4)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 06:41 AM

13. my doctor gives me a lovely "milk of amnesia" cocktail before the procedure

so I take a lovely little nap and he checks me out.

I'd rather take this route than introduce a manufactured bacteria into my body.

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Response to napoleon_in_rags (Reply #4)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 02:39 PM

18. It certainly is

My grandfather died 3 weeks after being diagnosed with colon cancer.
Of course, they had no treatment for it back in his days.
So he died at 56. Sad. I never met him.

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Response to napoleon_in_rags (Reply #4)

Sat Feb 11, 2012, 04:30 PM

28. My PCP told me that there is some interest in having dogs used to detect colon cancer.

Last edited Sat Feb 11, 2012, 05:29 PM - Edit history (1)

I think the idea is you send a stool sample to a lab and they have cancer detecting dogs identify the cancer patient's stool. They've experimented and found that the dogs have a 100% success rate of detection!

Man's best friend!

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Response to CTyankee (Reply #28)

Sat Feb 11, 2012, 06:22 PM

29. Dogs are amazing.

Here's the article backing that up:
http://health.usnews.com/health-news/family-health/cancer/articles/2011/02/03/health-buzz-dogs-can-detect-colon-cancer

Its funny, we've gone through this period of seeing what machines are capable of, I wonder if maybe the second renaissance might not be the discovery of what living things are capable of. That's absolutely incredible.

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Response to napoleon_in_rags (Reply #29)

Sat Feb 11, 2012, 06:51 PM

30. And your breath, too! Could it be just as easy as breathing on your dog?

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Response to n2doc (Original post)

Sun Jan 29, 2012, 09:33 PM

6. I can see a commercial application for this - designer poop colors!

any color you want. Purple, green, mauve etc. And after that, how about custom odors as well. I think I'd like day glow orange smelling like fresh popped popcorn. What about you?

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Response to n2doc (Original post)

Sun Jan 29, 2012, 10:06 PM

7. and the color will get you as wired as food coloring gets little kids...

 

until it mutates into something stronger that spreads to other people better.

Some day, some joker is going to stick the psilocybin gene into E. Coli. Let's see you keep from eating crayons after THAT.

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Response to n2doc (Original post)

Sun Jan 29, 2012, 10:17 PM

8. Memo to self...

 

Get working on wallpaper patent before Charmin beats me to it!

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Response to n2doc (Original post)

Sun Jan 29, 2012, 10:18 PM

9. But will smell like roses?

 

That is the real achievement?

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Response to n2doc (Original post)

Sun Jan 29, 2012, 10:18 PM

10. I have a pre-schooler.

He asks for corn several times a week.

The reason?

He wants to have "corn poop."

I know. I know. Come on, if DU can't survive a little pre-school humor, then we're all in big trouble.

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Response to HuckleB (Reply #10)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 03:54 PM

20. I guess that's one way to get a kid to eat veggies.

Wait until he figures out what beets will do to his poo or what asparagus will do to his pee.

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Response to Gormy Cuss (Reply #20)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 03:56 PM

21. Oh, he knows the asparagus smell.

In fact, he asks everyone to come and smell it.

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Response to HuckleB (Reply #21)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 06:17 PM

22. I volunteer for babysitting duty.

I like the kid already.

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Response to Gormy Cuss (Reply #22)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 06:25 PM

23. Oh, he's fun one-on-one!

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Response to HuckleB (Reply #10)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 09:52 PM

24. I learned after my first child to NEVER,NEVER give a child corn

until (s)he is toilet trained. You can take my word for this!

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Response to mysuzuki2 (Reply #24)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 09:55 PM

25. We never had a problem with that.

It's all lookey lou around here, and that's in the toilet!

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Response to n2doc (Original post)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 12:11 AM

11. We are the music makers...and we are the dreamers of dreams...


Everlasting Gobstoper that changes your poop colors...did Wonka invent this?

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Response to n2doc (Original post)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 12:37 AM

12. you get a similiar effect

if you buy a few boxes of Fruit Loops and seperate out the colors, just eat all of one color =P SURPRISE! a couple hours later. lol

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Response to n2doc (Original post)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 08:56 AM

14. Like this?

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Response to BlancheSplanchnik (Reply #14)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 12:06 PM

16. Brilliant!

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Response to FailureToCommunicate (Reply #16)

Tue Jan 31, 2012, 10:02 AM

26. hee hee!

Cute, eh?

Oh, I forgot on the first go round.....here's the vid!!!!!!!!!!

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Response to n2doc (Original post)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 11:54 AM

15. Should have saved that for April 1st

We could have had endless arguments as whether it was real or a con.

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Response to n2doc (Original post)

Mon Jan 30, 2012, 02:43 PM

19. Sounds good. But wait from what I know about mixing colors, if

I have Colitis, Salmonella, and worms my poo will tell me everything is OK? And if I have Colitis and Worms I am likely to get treatment for Colorectal cancer?

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Response to n2doc (Original post)

Mon Feb 13, 2012, 06:20 PM

35. Eating black licorice makes your poop green...I almost ended

up calling an ambulance...

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