Skip to comments.100 Trillion Good Bacterias Are Living In Human Body: Report
Posted on 06/15/2012 8:30:43 PM PDT by nickcarraway
Do you think bacteria, fungi and other microbes are harmful for your body? Discard the thought right away as a recent research has mapped and revealed that 100 trillion good bacteria are living in and on human body at every point of time and are contributing to good health.
The report presented on Wednesday was the result of a five-year, $173 million-worth US government initiative called the Human Microbiome Project which attempted to better examine bacteria, fungi and organisms - while all human bodies harbor trillions of bacteria but what they really are, how they differ from one person's body to another, how they coexist in harmony, play a significant role in digestion, synthesizing certain vitamins, forming immunity against disease-causing bacteria and more.
"Most of the time we live in harmony with them," said Eric Green, director of the National Human Genome Research Institute. But sometimes the harmony breaks down and we fall sick, cautioned Green.
The project, which was funded by the National Institutes of Health, involved 200 scientists at 80 institutions and bacteria taken from 242 healthy people and samples were taken from mouth, nose, skin, intestine and vagina. Researchers studied the DNA-sequencing machines used to map DNA in the Human Genome Project.
"This gives us a reference set of genes and microbes from healthy individuals," said James Servalovic, director of the Texas Children's Microbiome Center at Baylor College of Medicine and one of the researchers.
"This is really a new vista in biology," said Phillip Tarr, director of pediatric gastroenterology and nutrition at Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis and one of the leaders of the Human Microbiome Project.
With the accomplishment, new avenues to research genetic predisposition will be open, believe scientists.
"It's likely this work will lead to new treatments for [the inflammatory bowel disorder] Crohn's disease, new treatments for diabetes and metabolic diseases, new treatments for even other diseases, like eczema," said Michael Fischbach to Wall Street Journal, a biologist at the University of California, San Francisco. Fischbach, however, was not part of the project.
Going ahead, scientists will do similar research sampling microbiomes of children, elderly and also Africans and South Americans. Diseased people will also be studied to discover how microbes play in maintaining health or causing disease.
The findings are published by Nature and the Public Library of Science.
Ha, yep...a parasite that’s been treated with the wrong prescription!
First, Penicillin is ‘natural’, we just found a way to remake it in the laboratory, though most modern antibiotics are artificial.
But more importantly, with the newly emergent strains of antibiotic resistant bacteria, the existing class of antitbiotics might eventually become largely useless. And you might think, “Ah! The market will just make some more!” Alas, developing a new antibiotic seems to have a rapidly diminishing risk/reward and the rate of development of new antibiotics has been shrinking to zero. The trouble is that being lower lifeforms, bacteria evolve extremely rapidly, faster than the markets produce newer drugs. This might herald an entirely different mode of treatment, just like Penicillin heralded a massive shift in treatment of bacteria-induced diseases. There are in fact ‘natural’ alternatives like Bacteriophages (look them up).
There is a reason you don’t want to bury your system constantly in anti-biotics, but only when you need them. You not only kill the bad stuff with anti-biotics, but the good stuff too.
As an added point, the issue is not about being natural or man-made, but about efficacy. How effective and safe is a given substance in attacking a particular disease? That needs to be established by double blind clinical testing. The trouble with what we normally refer to as ‘natural’ remedies is just that they have not been established which means we must assume that they don’t quite work. But there are lots of natural extracts that have directly been used in fighting diseases like Penicillin and Quinine (Malaria).
Yeah. One bad microbe spoils it for the other ninety-nine trillion, nine hundred ninety-nine billion, nine hundred ninety-nine million, nine hundred ninety-nine thousand, nine hundred ninety-nine of them.
100 trillion minus 10...I just washed my hands.
Antibiotics do not affect the immune system. Taking them might kill off some of the "good" bacteria, which can, in some cases, leave you susceptible to an opportunistic infection like C. difficile.
If you want to avoid drugs that affect the immune system, avoid steroids. They suppress the immune system. If a physician prescribes them for a specific purpose, the benefit probably outweighs the risk, but otherwise...
>> “Bacterias”? <<
Yep. Decent article, illiterate headline.
>> bacteria evolve extremely rapidly, faster than the markets produce newer drugs <<
Yeah, but I submit that new drugs would be developed much faster if we didn’t have such a stupid regulatory regime at the FDA, and if we could have reasonable reforms of the tort laws.
For a particularly disturbing therapy, see:
Did not say it wasn’t effective.
Said it was disturbing.
Brings to mine the curse, “Eat s*** and die.”
Or perhaps in this case live. :)
I welcome our good bacteria overlords.
LOL! Good one.
There are levels to disturbing. Fecal bacteriotherapy has quietly been around for years, done by pragmatic doctors who had run out of other options for patients with destroyed or fouled up flora.
It made the medical community as a whole, however, cringe. Much of this can be explained because during their early studies, medical students get huge blocks of study about pathogens, and most of them turn into bacteriophobes at almost a neurotic level, at some point. It is hard to overcome that, psychologically.
What may have tipped the balance in favor of “good bacteria” are the drug resistant strains that are quite common today. The first response is to sterilize everything, but that is ineffective, because the problem is not contamination, but caused by the overuse of antibiotics.
Most of us have *some* antibiotic resistant bacteria in our bodies right now. But the “good” bacteria keep them in check by taking up all the available space. But when, due to injury or sickness, radiation, chemotherapy or especially antibiotics damage or wipe out the vast majority of the “good” intestinal flora, the drug resistant bacteria have a population explosion. A small amount of those bacteria are relatively harmless, but a large amount can be very destructive, or deadly.
Hospitals that get hit with an epidemic of drug resistant bacteria almost certainly overuse antibiotics. While they desperately try to clean every surface, it does not reduce the epidemic one bit. What does work is putting strict controls on the use of antibiotics. Only permitting the use of a specific antibiotic against a known infection.
Even more dramatic is the discovery that some severe autoimmune diseases can be at least temporarily neutralized by giving the patient an infection of *parasites*.
There is a human parasite called a “human whipworm”, that used to be quite common. A similar whipworm, found only in pigs, cannot live in the human body for more than a week or two, but when given to a person with life threatening Crohn’s disease, quickly normalizes their immune system, if not permanently, then for a long time.
Likewise, severe, life threatening asthma can be treated with hookworm, which used to be endemic to America, but has almost been eradicated here.
So it is a functional, interactive triangle of the human immune system, the bacterial flora, and parasites.
But wait, there’s more!
Since the 1920s, I believe, medicine has known about bacteriophage viruses, viruses that attack certain bacteria strains. The assumption was that they could be used like antibiotics against infection. However, like antibiotic resistance, bacteria adapt to viral threats to protect themselves, and they do so even faster than they do for antibiotics. So bacteriophages can only be used in very strict circumstances, for a short time, and accompanied by antibiotics.
But back to the gross, and bacteriophobic.
Humans have a zone on their skin, from about knees to navel, front and back, called the “coliform zone”. On this skin, there is a dense layer of coliform (fecal) bacteria, with far more pathogenic bacteria in it than most elsewhere on the body.
This is why it is important to wash your hands after going to the bathroom. Not because you have urine or feces on your hands, though you might, but because you have been touching the skin of the coliform zone.
Coliform bacteria is so unique to a person that it is almost like a fingerprint. And having dozens or hundreds of unique bacteria causes a major problem when two people have sex. They exchange a huge number of foreign to them bacteria.
It is like a massive septic infection. Commonly, women who only have their native coliform culture are prone to “yeast infections” when they have sex with someone who has had many partners, resulting in a “super coliform culture”.
Such a person is like getting a hundred small infections all at once. Very taxing to the immune system. And it is also frequently confused with a venereal disease, making the young woman very unhappy.
However,I’d like to point out that not all coliform bacteria are in the fecal coliform group.
Most coliforms are found in soil and the general environment. Fecal coliforms are a subgroup.
Obama is lining up to give them the right to vote this election...
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