Study Terms

Rationale: Our team proposes novel wastewater analyses for the management of gastrointestinal conditions and early warning of disease. This technology uses hardware for wastewater processing and an artificial intelligence (AI) software to assess individual bowel movements by automatic analysis of the stool physical properties.

This study: This research project aims to develop an AI algorithm to classify stool appearance as a clinician would. This team includes engineers and physicians from Duke University. Accurate image classification requires thousands of images to train the algorithm. We are asking the general public to participate in this research by uploading images of their stool in order to help us advance this technology. Participation in this study is voluntary and open to residents of the United States over 18 years of age. There is no risk nor direct benefit from participation.

Data Confidentiality: Pictures taken with a cell phone may contain indirectly identifiable information such as GPS coordinates of where the picture was taken. The research team does not need nor want this information. The pictures will go through a process to remove this information. The uploaded images will be stored securely on Duke Box servers. The study team will scrub any private information from all images using “exiftool” and will then delete the original pictures. The pictures may be shared with other researchers only after any identifiable information has been removed.

Contact us at if you have questions about the research.

For questions about your rights as a participant in this research study, contact the Duke University Campus IRB at 919-684-3030 or

By participating in this study, you agree to the data usage terms described above.

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