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Polygence Scholar2023
Reilly Kreutz's profile

Reilly Kreutz

Class of 2024Petaluma, CA


Hello! My name is Reilly Kreutz and I am a high-schooler living in Northern California. I'm passionate about topics of health and wellness, which is why I chose to focus my research project on the human gut microbiome. Our gut truly is our second brain; its health is essential for our overall functioning and well-being! After my project is complete, I hope to share my findings with the broader public. The medical and healthcare systems have grown further from seeking the root cause and preventative medicine. Knowledge of our microbiota can help us understand what's causing health issues and how to fix them, rather than minimizing symptoms via medications. With my findings, I hope I can impact the healthcare system and shift the focus to our gut!

Project Portfolio

Considering how Microbial Colonization is Determined

Started May 12, 2023

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Abstract or project description

The human gut microbiome (GM) is of great interest to medical professionals and the general population alike. The gut has been heavily regarded as a key player to our overall health and well-being as it is linked to immunity, process of aging, cognitive ability, disease susceptibility, and much more. Currently, there are two conflicting perspectives on what determines the health of our gut. The first perspective hypothesizes that GM health is determined in utero and early infancy, and the second perspective claims the GM is susceptible to change throughout life. Each perspective simultaneously overlaps and contradicts each other. By addressing the evidence and limitations of each, a greater understanding of the GM and our microbiology could be established. This paper reviewed numerous studies from both perspectives in order to gain a better understanding of how the structure of the human microbiome is determined. It was found that both perspectives hold weight and can be utilized when addressing gut health. By understanding exactly what determines the state of our GM, people can have better control over their health, and major progression in the fields of health and medicine could be made. The gut holds promising implications for the future of health.