Once the first two components are well underway, we will embark on a series of comprehensive immunological studies to understand the cross-talk between bacterial populations of interest and the immune system.


These immune studies, although extremely important, will not be undertaken in earnest until a preliminary roadmap of the microbial species and molecules of interest are identified. Thus, with the exception of preliminary experiments to establish and validate assays in the first year, the earliest we propose starting these experiments is during the second year of the study.