3 minute read

Creating a Clinical Flow

Louise Carder
Louise Carder
Written on
January 11, 2021

The Test Roadmap

This article will introduce you to the roadmap of the tests that we offer at Colabs, so that you can start to consider your own flow.

As the image below suggests our DNA is a fundamental foundation of who we are and how we function.  We now know that genes are not static, they can be turned on and off.  They were designed to work that way in part to make us more energy efficient beings!  Environment and lifestyle (which includes our beliefs and connections, not just how we spend our days and fuel ourselves) connect with our gene switches and the resulting gene expression in an exquisite feedback loop.  This results in a functional capacity, essentially how well we function.  It is the functional connection between several body systems that then defines our health picture.

Our clients are now able to access gene single nuclear polymorphism (SNP) testing via various organisations.  Increasing numbers of practitioners are also now trained to interpret these results and work with clients to support optimal function of, for example the methylation and sulphation detoxification pathways.  By adding in blood or urine results, such as for vitamins and minerals, it is also then possible to better understand what the functional effect of the SNPs might be, and whether supplementing with nutrients in specific forms may have additional benefits.  We can also test other functional markers to assess the combination of this work, such as homocysteine.

The true bridge in the middle, illustrated in the diagram below, is transcriptomics though.  Whilst the basic method of getting an idea of this has been incredibly useful and has given us clear clinical information, by analysing the transcriptomics this allows us to see how the genes themselves are actually expressing and the effect of this on signalling pathways.  Whether they are upregulated or suppressed can give illuminating clinical insights.

The Next Generation

This is the next generation of testing that Colabs are focusing on for European practitioners.  We have two different test pathway options for this; on the one hand we can consider DNA adducts and mitochondrial links to DNA and the other focuses on mRNA signalling leading us to understand gene expression on key pathways related to coagulation, histamine, prostaglandins, and mitochondrial function for example.

For practitioners who work with chronic conditions how transcriptomics affects immune system function can shine a clear spotlight on the work that is required. We see how alternated gene expression can dial up effects on coagulation, the cytoskeleton, and their respective networks.

Presence of potential pathogens also fits into this picture, such as when we consider Helicobacter pylori and we start to see how the layering of understanding genetics and functional status is of key clinical importance. In addition, we must also consider the place of other potential inflammagens such as biotoxins and other environmental exposures so we can connect many more dots for our clients.

At Colabs we offer gene testing for some key SNPs as well as HLA presentation.  We also offer environmental testing by way of home dust swab testing.  We offer transcriptomics testing, and we offer functional tests too that help us understand deficiencies and excesses and how well our body system pathways are working.  Having a clinical flow for these tests means you could start with transcriptomics or with the immune/energy systems if your client has a chronic condition, or you could start with lifestyle and see how far you get just focusing on that.  For many practitioners starting with the gut every time is a priority.

The landscape of the lenses that we use in clinical practice is constantly evolving and as practitioners we can use these to our advantage to create our own clinical flow.  Please contact us if you would like to discuss your own clinical flow further.  Why not share your own clinical flow with us via social media.