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Transforming Gut Health with Google Cloud and Microba

Microba Uses Machine Learning & Data Infrastructure in Google Cloud to Help Transform Gut Health.

The Challenge

Microba began providing metagenomic gut microbiome analysis to the public in July 2018 with the launch of a home analysis kit, Microba Insight™. This kit gives individuals access to their own unique gut microbiome profile and information about how the microorganisms in their gut may be influencing other areas of health.

Basing its research on metagenomics—whole genome DNA sequencing—means Microba generates very large volumes of data.

“This data has large processing requirements to produce the reports delivered to customers, as well as bespoke analytical requirements.” says Wills, CEO of Microba. “We also follow a ‘burst’ pattern with our data processing—meaning there are large amounts of data to process very quickly—and then a period of several days of low volume.”

These technical requirements pose challenges to achieving scalability while ensuring costs remain feasible.

Microba Shot.jpg

Our Solution

By leveraging Google Cloud Platform’s capabilities, including specific instance sizing, high throughput networking and Kubernetes, we achieved a solution that delivered all technical requirements whilst providing significant cost reductions.

Our solution has reduced Microba's storage costs by 25%, allowing for computing scalability up to 1000s of CPUs when processing is required and down to 0 when not required. Workload storage has been moved into cloud native architecture and the time required for sequence run processing has been reduced from 48 hours to under 12 hours.

“Max Kelsen has improved lives through a deeper understanding of the gut microbiome using scientific knowledge and approaches.”

Blake Wills • Chief Executive Officer of Microba.



Reduction in processing costs


Reduction in storage costs


Reduction in sequencing time

About Microba

Based in Brisbane, Microba is an Australian business that is establishing itself as a world leader in analysis of the gut microbiome. With global research indicating the gut microbiome plays a central role in health and disease, Microba is a strong contributor to the development of new pathology services, therapeutics, and diagnostics. Microba emerged from research conducted by Professors Gene Tyson and Philip Hugenholtz over the past 20 years and has been made possible by advances in computing power over the past decade.


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