This is a surprising spin on social networking: A group of scientists has started up a new social network called MyMicrobes, aimed at bringing together people who have similar intestinal flora makeups. Yep — they have gut bugs in common.

The idea is to connect people with similar intestinal bacteria so that they can share their diets and personal anecdotes, helping both the participants and the researchers to better understand which types of gut flora react positively or negatively to which types of foods.

The niche network is likely to remain very niche indeed, considering that it costs $2,100 to have one’s intestinal flora sequenced, which would be prohibitively high for many.

But the interesting thing about this is the use of the social media platform to provide a means of exchanging information on a person-to-person basis to help address health problems. It’s a heart-warming — if not gut-wrenching — development.

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