11 October 2004

You'll never walk alone

Wired News: People Are Human-Bacteria Hybrid: "Most of the cells in your body are not your own, nor are they even human. They are bacterial. From the invisible strands of fungi waiting to sprout between our toes, to the kilogram of bacterial matter in our guts, we are best viewed as walking 'superorganisms,' highly complex conglomerations of human, fungal, bacterial and viral cells.

That's the view of scientists at Imperial College London who published a paper in Nature Biotechnology Oct. 6 describing how these microbes interact with the body. Understanding the workings of the superorganism, they say, is crucial to the development of personalized medicine and health care in the future because individuals can have very different responses to drugs, depending on their microbial fauna.

The scientists concentrated on bacteria. More than 500 different species of bacteria exist in our bodies, making up more than 100 trillion cells. Because our bodies are made of only some several trillion human cells, we are somewhat outnumbered by the aliens. It follows that most of the genes in our bodies are from bacteria, too."

2 comments:

Jeremy said...

Wow! Great blog! Just thought I'd let you know that since I think my readers would be interested in your blog, I've linked to it from mine, under "Other Political Blogs".

http://libertylives.blogspot.com

zippy said...

Thanks, Jeremy. I'm glad you like it.