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Microbial communities found within the human body - Essay Example

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However, the interactions of plants and animals with the microbial world have been defined mostly in the context of disease states and a relatively small number of symbiotic case…
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Microbial communities found within the human body
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"Microbial communities found within the human body"

Download file to see previous pages it to be a "newly discovered organ" since its existence was not generally recognized until the late 1990s and it is understood to potentially have overwhelming impact on human health. Modern DNA sequencing techniques have enabled researchers to find the majority of these microbes, since the majority of them cannot be cultured in a lab using current techniques. The ecological community of commensal, symbiotic and pathogenic microorganisms that literally share our body space is known as “microbiome”. This term was originally coined by Joshua Lederberg, who argued the importance of microorganisms inhabiting the human body in health and disease. Many scientific articles distinguish "microbiome" and "microbiota" to describe either the collective genomes of the microorganisms that reside in an environmental niche or the microorganisms themselves, respectively. However by the original definitions these terms are largely synonymous. The human microbiome (or human microbiota) is the aggregate of microorganisms, a microbiome that resides on the surface and in deep layers of skin, in the saliva and oral mucosa, in the conjunctiva, and in the gastrointestinal tracts. They include bacteria, fungi, and archea. Some of these organisms perform tasks that are useful for the human host. However, the majority have been too poorly researched for us to understand the role they play. Those that are expected to be present, and that under normal circumstances do not cause disease, but instead participate in maintaining health, are deemed members of the “normal flora”. Most of the microbes associated with humans appear to be not harmful at all, but rather assist in maintaining processes necessary for a healthy body. A surprising finding was that at specific sites on the body, a different set of microbes may perform the same function for different people. For example, on the tongues of two people two entirely different sets of organisms will break down sugars in the same ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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