Alberta Bloom


a Life of Health with Observation & Optimization of the Microbiome in premature infants


By studying the early-life microbiome of both premature and term infants, their environment & immune system, Alberta BLOOM aims to one day transform the life and livelihoods of infants born too soon.

What is Alberta BLOOM?

Alberta BLOOM is a significant research initiative to understand how the microbiome of children born premature develops over the first years of life in comparison to the microbiome of children born at term. This study is investigating how environmental factors (e.g. nutrition, stress, medications, skin to skin, etc.) affect the developing microbiome and the health of infants born prematurely. BLOOM will also study the development of the microbiome and the immune system of children over the first years of life, to learn how microbes that inhabit a child’s gut can influence the risk of asthma and allergies.

By following children from birth to preschool age, Alberta BLOOM will collect information from the most critical developmental time points.  The invaluable participation of babies born premature and babies born at term will greatly add to our understanding of the microbiome and will also provide future opportunities to predict outcomes and provide better treatments to children born premature. 

What is the Microbiome?

The gut microbiome is the community of microbes living in our intestines. Composed of bacteria, fungi, virus, yeast, our microbiome has been shown to be a key player in health & diseases.

Why is it important?

Premies are at higher risk of developing infectious and chronic diseases. In early-life, there is a critical window of time for microbial colonization that plays a key role in the development of health & disease.

Understanding which microbes are important and at what time is crucial to develop strategies that will prevent diseases and improve the health of premature babies.

Discover the BLOOM studies?

The BLOOM research initiative encompasses four clinical studies across NICUs in Calgary to unravel the role of the gut microbes of premature, very premature and extremely premature infants in health and diseases. Learn more by clicking on the study below.​ 

Investigate the link between specific gut microbes found premature babies and the risk of developing childhood health conditions

Investigate how the gut microbiome of very premature babies develops during the first months of life

Investigate how the maternal microbiome contributes to premature birth and the establishment of infant’s microbiome

Investigate how the microbiome of infants born very prematurely is linked to immune development, asthma & allergies

Curious about the infant microbiome?

We have gathered educational resources about the infant microbiome from articles to podcasts and videos, we invite you to dig in and learn more about the role of the gut microbiome early in life.​ 

Looking for support?

Parents & family of infants born premature will find in our Resources section guidance to find mental support when facing a challenging time.​ 

We have News!

See our latest news regarding our studies, from new research published thanks to our amazing participants and dedicated team.​ 


Plus all our wonderful healthcare practitioners based at all NICUs in Calgary!