St Albans brothers undergo medical research for TwinsUK

Matthew and Chris Dudley are taking part in a TwinsUK study to help medics learn about gut bacteria

Matthew and Chris Dudley are taking part in a TwinsUK study to help medics learn about gut bacteria through diet. - Credit: Archant

St Albans brothers are taking part in a twin study for medical research purposes.

Chris and Matthew Dudley, 36, of Nelson Avenue, decided to volunteer for a two-week trial testing the impact of diet on bacteria in the gut. The research project, Predict, is being conducted by TwinsUK at Kings College London. The aim is to be able to offer bespoke nutritional plans through an app.

The pair visited the hospital together at the beginning of the fortnight on Tuesday June, 11 where they were given a special muffin for breakfast and lunch. They will wear activity monitors and blood sugar monitors for the whole time period and have been given breakfast to eat every day which must be followed by a three-hour fast.

Matthew said: "It is quite full on.

"Weighing out everything I eat and writing it down can be quite time consuming. My brother has got more of a challenge as he flew out to Sardinia the next day."

The brothers are logging everything they eat and what time they eat it on an app on their mobile phones. At the end of the two weeks the medics will correlate all the information and the results.

Matthew added: "We will get the results back to compare against what we logged in the app. I had lasagna on Monday, for example, and I went out drinking at the weekend. I hear things about healthy eating but to know first hand how my body responds to certain foods is going to be really interesting."

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He also said he would encourage others to consider twin studies because there are many different types and twins can really help with medical research across a variety of conditions and diseases.

A spokesperson from TwinsUK said: "Without our twins, there would be no TwinsUK - it's as simple as that.

"The health research we carry out is only possible thanks to the thousands of selfless volunteers who give up their time (and bodily samples!) repeatedly over the years. We are incredibly grateful to all of our twins who choose to take part in TwinsUK."

TwinsUK resource is the biggest UK adult twin registry of 12,000 twins used to study the genetic and environmental aetiology of age related complex traits and diseases.