Comprehensive Stool Analysis

Stool testing is becoming more and more popular as a means of diagnosing disease and determining your risk of things like colon cancer.  Some or these tests are really wonderful and give you a complete picture of what is going on inside of you, while others leave you scratching your head looking for more.

Gastrointestinal symptoms are very vague (change in bowel habits, nausea, gas, bloating) and don't give you a whole lot of information.  Unless you just ate something suspicious the night before or you just returned from traveling abroad, diagnosing the root cause of your GI complaints can be rather difficult with the current testing available.

That't where the GI-MAP test from Diagnostic Solutions Laboratory comes in.

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The GI-MAP from Diagnostic Solutions Laboratory 

What is it?

Overwhelmingly, research indicates that gut health impacts overall health. The gut microbiome, in particular, plays a critical role in mediating the effects of diet and other factors on health, including digestive, immune, metabolic and neuroendocrine functions. Assessing GI health with the proper tools can help practitioners get to the root cause of chronic illness.
 

The GI-MAP (Microbial Assay Plus) is unique in the field of comprehensive stool testing. It relies exclusively on quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) technology to detect parasites, bacteria, fungi, and more, by targeting the specific DNA of the organisms tested.

 

Who should get the test?

Almost every patient can benefit from a GI-MAP gut health assessment. Some patients are looking to achieve optimal health, while other patients have been chronically ill and frustrated without a diagnosis for years. 

Some conditions that warrant testing are:

  • Autoimmune diseases

  • IBS/IBD

  • Digestive complaints, diarrhea or constipation

  • Brain fog

  • Skin problems, like acne and psoriasis

  • Mood disorders, depression, and anxiety

  • Diabetes and weight loss issues 

Can infants and children benefit from the test?

Yes. The GI-MAP is commonly used in infants and children, and can provide insight into conditions related to Attentional Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Autism, and digestive complaints.

What does it test for?

PATHOGENS

The GI-MAP includes pathogens (bacterial, parasitic, and viral) commonly known to cause intestinal gastroenteritis. It's important to note that not all individuals with positive findings for pathogens will present with symptoms. Many factors, including the health of the individual, the transient nature of some pathogens, and the presence and expression of virulence factors all contribute to an individual's symptoms. 

Toxins are a type of virulence factor produced by certain pathogens. Since GI-MAP is a DNA-based test, results reflect the levels of pathogenic strains carrying the toxin genes, not the levels of any toxins that may be produced. 

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BACTERIAL PATHOGENS

  • Campylobacter

  • C. difficile Toxin A

  • C. difficile Toxin B

  • Enterohemorrhagic E. coli

  • E. coli O157

  • Enteroinvasive E. coli/Shigella

  • Enterotoxigenic E. coli LT/ST

  • Shiga-like Toxin E. coli stx1

  • Shiga-like Toxin E. coli stx2

  • Salmonella

  • Vibro cholerae

  • Yersinia enterocolitica

PARASITIC PATHOGENS

  • Cryptosporidium

  • Entamoeba histolytica

  • Giardia

VIRAL PATHOGENS

  • Adrenovirus 40/41

  • Norovirus GI

  • Norovirus GII

NORMAL/COMMENSAL BACTERIA 

Trillions of microorganisms inhabit the human intestine to make up a complex ecosystem that plays an important role in human health. Commensal bacteria extract nutrients and energy from our diets, maintain gut barrier function, produce vitamins (biotin and vitamin K), and protect against colonization by potential pathogens. 

COMMENSAL BACTERIA

  • Akkermansia Mucinophilia

  • Bacteroides fragilis

  • Bifidobacterium spp.

  • Clostridia (class)

  • Enterobacter spp.

  • Enterococcus spp.

  • Escherichia spp.

  • Faecalbacterium prausnitzii

  • Lactobacillus spp.

BACTERIAL PHYLA

  • Bacteroidetes

  • Firmicutes

  • Firmicutes/Bacteroidetes Ratio

H. PYLORI

Recent studies have shown that nearly 50% of the world's population may harbor H. pylori. And, although many carriers are asymptomatic, H. pylori is known to have a causative role in ulcers, chronic gastritis, and stomach cancer. 

Additionally, in early phases of colonization, patients may experience hypochlorhydria followed by a change to hyper aciduria. Over time, additional H. pylori strains may colonize, including those with Virulence Factors and increased disease potential.

  • Virulence Factor, babA

  • Virulence Factor, cabA

  • Virulence Factor, cabPAI

  • Virulence Factor, dupA

  • Virulence Factor, iceA

  • Virulence Factor, opiA

  • Virulence Factor, vacA

OPPORTUNISTIC/OVERGROWTH MICROBES 

Many bacteria measured on the GI-MAP are considered opportunistic pathogens, as they only cause disease and illness in some individuals, particularly the immune-compromised. Many individuals come into contact with opportunistic bacteria and experience no symptoms. Most sources consider these microbes to be normal in the stool. However, they can cause gastroenteritis and inflammation at high levels in vulnerable patients. Symptoms may include diarrhea, loose stools, abdominal pain, or even constipation. 

Overgrowth and excessive colonization by opportunistic bacteria may occur when the commensal bacteria are impaired by poor diet, antibiotic use, parasitic infection, or a weakened immune system. When intestinal permeability is present these microbes could escape the lumen of the gut and infect extraintestinal sites.

ADDITIONAL DYSBIOTIC/OVERGROWTH BACTERIA

  • Enterococcus faecalis

  • Enterococcus faecium

  • Methanobacteriaceae (family)

  • Morganella morganii

  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa

  • Staphylococcus spp.

  • Staphylococcus aureus

  • Streptococcus spp.

POTENTIAL AUTOIMMUNE TRIGGERS

  • Citrobacter spp.

  • Citrobacter freundii

  • Fusobacterium spp.

  • Klebsiella spp.

  • Klebsiella pneumoniae

  • Mycobacterium avium

  • Prevotella copri

  • Proteus spp.

  • Proteus mirabilis

FUNGI/YEAST 

Fungal organisms are commonly found in the human digestive tract, but fungal overgrowth can cause illness in susceptible individuals. Fungal growth may be localized in the body. For instance, Candida spp. may be high in the large intestine but normal in the small intestine, and vice versa. In a patient with suspected fungal overgrowth, additional tests may be necessary to understand the complete picture of fungal overgrowth. Urinary D-arabinitol or antibodies to Candida are sometimes used.

FUNGI/YEAST

  • Candida albicans

  • Candida spp.

  • Geotricum spp.

  • Microsporidia spp.

  • Rhodoturula spp.

VIRUSES 

  

OPPORTUNISTIC VIRUSES

  • CMV- Cytomegalovirus

  • EBV- Epstein Bar Virus

PARASITES 

A parasite is an organism that lives and feeds on a host organism at the expense of the host. The GI-MAP tests for pathogenic parasites and protozoa (some of which are non-pathogenic) most commonly occurring in the GI tract. Sources of exposure should be identified and eliminated to prevent reinfection. 

PROTOZOA

  • Blastocystis hominis

  • Chilomastix mesnelli

  • Cyclospora cayetanenensis

  • Dientamoeba fragilis

  • Endolimax nana

  • Entamoeba coli

  • Pentatrichomonas hominis

WORMS

  • Ancyclostroma duodenale

  • Ascaris lumbricoides

  • Necator americanis

  • Trichuris trichiura

  • Taenia solium/saginada

ANTIBIOTIC RESISTANCE GENES 

The GI-MAP includes results for detection of antibiotic resistance genes in the microbiome. If an antibiotic resistance gene is present, then that class of antibiotics is designated POSITIVE for antibiotic resistance. A positive result for the presence of resistance genes for a given antibiotic indicates that the antibiotic is not an ideal choice for an antibiotic protocol. 

Antibiotic resistance genes apply to all of the microorganisms found in the fecal sample. Since microbes can rapidly share DNA under stress, the presence of antibiotic resistance in any organism is reason enough to avoid that drug class.

Phenotypes | HELOBACTER

  • Amoxicillen

  • Clarithromycin

  • Fluroquinolines

  • Tetracycline

Genotypes | UNIVERSAL MICROBIOTA RESISTANCE GENES

  • β-lactamase

  • Fluoroquinolones

  • Macrolides

  • Vancomycin

INTESTINAL HEALTH MARKERS

DIGESTION

  • Elastase-1

  • Steatocrit

IMMUNE RESPONSE

  • SIgA

  • Anti-gliadin SIgA

INFLAMMATION

  • Calprotectin

GI MARKERS

  • β-Glucuronidase

  • Occult Blood - FIT

The test kit can be sent to you anywhere in the country but is only available through a physician.  

Give us a call at (708) 848-4626 to order yours!