Mucus is not just the awful phlegm from your cough, it actually has the ability to tame bacteria infection! Scientists at MIT recently discovered that the glycans on our mucus can actually trigger biochemical responses that protect us from pathogens. Read Wei Li’s article to learn more. Continue reading The Key to Taming Bacteria: Mucus Sugars
A group of scientists uncovered a commensal gut bacteria, Akkermansia muciniphila, that can significantly ameliorate ALS symptoms in mice, and also prolong their lifespan. Their results highlight the potential of modulating the gut microbiome to treat ALS. Continue reading The Next Ice Bucket Challenge: Modulating Your Gut Microbiome to Treat ALS
Helping malnourished kids recover means we can’t just feed only them – we also have to feed their bacteria. And the bacteria are picky eaters. Continue reading Malnourished children don’t just need more food—they also need more microbes
Bacteria in the human gut can modify the ingested drugs rendering them useless. Scientists discovered how the gut bacteria degrade a Parkinson’s disease medicine and found a way to stop them from stealing our drugs. Continue reading Hey, those bacteria are stealing our drugs!
Over the past decade, the gut microbiome and its effects on human health have become a topic of considerable interest in the scientific community and popular media. The gut microbiome is composed of bacteria that naturally reside in the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, which have an effect on various biological processes such as digestion, metabolism, regulation of the immune system and protection against pathogens. Interestingly, researchers … Continue reading Bacteria may live naturally inside the human brain
In each human gut, a community of trillions of bacteria help digest food and make certain nutrients. Some of these bacteria are associated with disease such as diabetes and Crohn’s, while some prevent disease. The composition of bacteria varies from one person to another, with diet and geographical location contributing to the diversity. In modern times, where millions of people migrate around the globe, their … Continue reading Refugees’ Gut Bacteria Become Westernized After Moving to the US
If you’ve visited a supermarket recently, you might have noticed that yogurts and kombucha are taking up more shelf space. These products are two popular examples of probiotics: living bacteria touted to provide human health benefits. It’s not just a millennial fad – the probiotics market is projected to be over $60 billion by 2023. The accepted belief is that good bacteria drive out bad … Continue reading Probiotics prevents dangerous pathogen infection by making the bacteria ‘deaf’
An ultrasound is probably most popularly recognized as a doctor’s tool to peer into the womb and take a look at a growing fetus during a woman’s pregnancy. But what if sound could be used to take a look at even smaller things – like the microorganisms in your gut? Mikhail Shapiro’s research group at the California Institute of Technology has been able to track … Continue reading Can we locate bacteria by listening to them?
by Katherine J. Wu figures by Neal Atsuka Are we flushing the next big cancer treatment down the toilet? Probably not – but the contents of our feces could very well be influencing how our bodies respond to cancer drugs. As it turns out, everybody poops – and everybody poops more than poop. I’m talking, of course, about the gut microbiota – the enormous collection … Continue reading Immunotherapy, with a Side of Poo: How gut microbes influence cancer treatment