New research out of Washington University could help explain why malnourished children suffer long-term health effects, even after medical treatment.
As young children develop, the community of bacteria and other microbes in their intestines develops with them. In healthy children, the community reaches maturity about the time a child turns two years old.
Washington University microbiologist Jeff Gordon calls those tens of trillions of intestinal microbes “an organ within an organ,” because of the key role they play in helping people digest food and absorb its nutrients.
Microbes are known to be able to thrive in extreme environments, from inside fiery volcanoes to down on the bottom of the ocean. Now scientists have found a surprising number of them living in storm clouds tens of thousands of feet above the Earth. And those airborne microbes could play a role in global climate.
The National Weather Service says large parts of rural Missouri and Illinois had between three-to-five inches of rainfall this weekend.
In St. Louis, Oakville received three and a half inches of rain, the most in the metropolitan area. But National Weather Service Meteorologist Jayson Gosselin said it will take much more rain to snap this summer's historic drought.
Soil bacteria may be helping to make disease-causing bacteria resistant to antibiotics.
That’s according to a new study out of Washington University.
Lead researcher, microbiologist Gautam Dantas, says he and his colleagues found seven genes in farmland soil bacteria that are identical to genes in human pathogens – and that provide resistance to a wide range of antibiotics.
The associate director of Washington University in St. Louis' Genome Institute, George Weinstock, was one of this project's lead researchers. He says we have about ten times more microbial cells in our body than we have human cells.
He told our reporter Véronique LaCapra today:
“...there’s probably a hundred times or more microbial genes in our body than there are genes in our human genome,” Weinstock said. “So the microbes, they’re not just a small little part of us, they’re really a very, very large, perhaps almost dominant part of our body.”
The human body contains about 100 trillion cells, but only maybe one in 10 of those cells is actually human. The rest are from bacteria, viruses and other microorganisms. Now, scientists have unveiled the first survey the "human microbiome," which includes 10,000 species and more than 8 million genes.
Researchers have completed the first comprehensive census of the human “microbiome” — the trillions of bacteria, viruses, and other microorganisms that live in and on our bodies.
The associate director of Washington University’s Genome Institute, George Weinstock, was one of the project’s lead researchers. He says we have about ten times more microbial cells in our body than we have human cells.
Washington University microbiologist Dr. Jeffrey Gordon says his team then transplanted the bacterial communities into previously germ-free mice, to see how the lab-grown bacteria would respond to a human diet.