Norman Robillard, Ph.D., Founder of Digestive Health Institute is a gut health expert, author and microbiologist. He is the creator of Fast Tract Diet – Fermentation Potential (FP) System, author of the Fast Tract Digestion book series and publisher of the Fast Tract Diet mobile app.
Dr. Norm received his Ph.D. in microbiology from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst studying Bacillus anthracis and other Bacillus species. His post-doctoral training at Tufts University, Boston focused on antibiotic resistance gene transfer. He was the first to demonstrate the transfer of genes (via conjugation) between the anaerobic gut microbes Bacteroides fragilis and E. coli.
During his career in pharma / biotech, Dr. Norm studied the mechanisms of antibiotic action and the genetics of antibiotic resistance. His work contributed to the development and approval of ciprofloxacin, a lifesaving antibiotic, though he always recommended a cautious approach with antibiotics balancing the benefits with the risks and side effects.
Beyond antibiotics, Dr Norm worked a variety of other projects on septic shock, viral illnesses and other antibiotic, antiviral and antibody-based therapies. After over 20 years in pharma, Dr Norm became interested in dietary and behavioral approaches for functional GI illness and founded the Digestive Health Institute as a hub for information and support for people suffering with these conditions. He currently serves as a scientific board member of Nutrition & Metabolism Society and continues to participate in clinical research aimed at improving dietary and holistic behavioral approaches to IBS, GERD and other functional GI conditions.
About his personal journey on digestive health, please read one of his blog, What Really Causes Acid Reflux and GERD?
- Heartburn / Acid Reflux / GERD
- laryngopharyngeal reflux disease (LPR)
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO)
- Celiac and Crohn’s disease
- Ulcerative colitis
- Leaky gut and autoimmunity
He focuses on the root cause of these conditions and employs his 3 pillar approach as a holistic alternative to drugs and antibiotics.
Dr. Norm was the first to propose small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) as the underlying cause of acid reflux and explained the connection between intragastric pressure from gas-producing bacteria in our intestines, nutritional malabsorption and the symptoms of acid reflux in his first book, Heartburn Cured.
His latest book series provides a safe and effective dietary tool and behavioral strategy (Fast Tract Diet) as an alternative to proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), H2 blockers, IBS drugs or antibiotics for GERD, IBS and other SIBO related conditions.
The Fast Tract Diet was presented at the Digestive Disease Week conference in 2013 to provide gastroenterologists with a new science-based dietary treatment option for addressing SIBO-related conditions.
Michael R. Eades, M.D., Co-author of New York Times Best Seller, Protein Power has been an advocate of Dr. Norm’s work and writes about the effectiveness of Fast Tract Diet in his blogs, GERD: Treat it with a low- or high-carb diet and GERD Treatment: Nutrition vs Drugs
1. Marchbanks CR, McKiel JR, Gilbert DH, Robillard NJ, Painter B, Zinner SH,
Dudley MN. Dose ranging and fractionation of intravenous ciprofloxacin against
Pseudomonas aeruginosa and Staphylococcus aureus in an in vitro model of
infection. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 1993 Sep;37(9):1756-63. PubMed PMID:
8239581; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC188066.
2. Masecar BL, Robillard NJ. Spontaneous quinolone resistance in Serratia
marcescens due to a mutation in gyrA. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 1991
May;35(5):898-902. PubMed PMID: 1649573; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC245126.
3. Robillard NJ. Broad-host-range gyrase A gene probe. Antimicrob Agents
Chemother. 1990 Oct;34(10):1889-94. PubMed PMID: 1963286; PubMed Central PMCID:
4. Masecar BL, Celesk RA, Robillard NJ. Analysis of acquired ciprofloxacin
resistance in a clinical strain of Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Antimicrob Agents
Chemother. 1990 Feb;34(2):281-6. PubMed PMID: 2158277; PubMed Central PMCID:
5. Robillard NJ, Masecar BL, Brescia B and Celesk, R. Comparisons of DNA Gyrases from Different Species. In The 4-Quinolones: Anti Bacterial Agents in Vitro. Geoff C. Crumplin Ed. Springer Science and Business Media. 1990, 2012
6. Celesk RA, Robillard NJ. Factors influencing the accumulation of ciprofloxacin
in Pseudomonas aeruginosa. Antimicrob Agents Chemother. 1989 Nov;33(11):1921-6.
PubMed PMID: 2514623; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC172788.
7. Robillard NJ, Scarpa AL. Genetic and physiological characterization of
ciprofloxacin resistance in Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO. Antimicrob Agents
Chemother. 1988 Apr;32(4):535-9. PubMed PMID: 2837141; PubMed Central PMCID:
8. Robillard NJ, Tally FP, Malamy MH. Tn4400, a compound transposon isolated from
Bacteroides fragilis, functions in Escherichia coli. J Bacteriol. 1985
Dec;164(3):1248-55. PubMed PMID: 2999075; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC219322.
9. Barsomian GD, Robillard NJ, Thorne CB. Chromosomal mapping of Bacillus
thuringiensis by transduction. J Bacteriol. 1984 Mar;157(3):746-50. PubMed PMID:
6583200; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC215321.
10. Ruhfel RE, Robillard NJ, Thorne CB. Interspecies transduction of plasmids
among Bacillus anthracis, B. cereus, and B. thuringiensis. J Bacteriol. 1984
Mar;157(3):708-11. PubMed PMID: 6421798; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC215315.