What is citizen science?

Science that involves the people. Citizen science projects welcome the participation of the general public in the discovery and sharing of scientific knowledge. The American Gut project is just one of hundreds of active citizen science projects contributing to a diverse range of fields, from astronomy to ecology to genetics and everything in between.


Being a citizen scientist at the American Gut project

The process is simple, here’s what you need to do to get involved:

  1. Make a monetary contribution that covers the cost of sample processing, sequencing, and analysis (this is where the crowd funding comes in).
  2. We will send you a sample collection kit in the mail.
  3. Collect your samples, answer some dietary and lifestyle questions, and mail the sample kit back to us.
  4. We’ll analyze the samples and upload the results to your own participant web portal (see more about this on our 101 page).
  5. That’s it! Quick and painless.

Because the American Gut project is a citizen science project, you get some cool information about the microbes that call your body home while providing us with the priceless data that will enable us to start identifying microbiome trends and to begin answering intriguing questions about the connection between our microbes and our health. Here’s to the power of citizen science!