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News and events

News & events

The Universe within, how our microbes shape our health

January 23, 2017

By Elizabeth Ferris, Richmond Magazine

When Jennifer Fettweis stepped on the stage at The Byrd Theatre for a TEDxRVA talk in October, she had news that may have left some in the sold-out crowd squirming. 

The message? You’re not entirely human.

Rather, our bodies are host to a complex network of bacteria, fungi and viruses — trillions of them. These micro-organisms and their products, which are known as the human microbiome, play an important part in bodily functions, from digesting food to warding off infection. Researchers say they may also hold the key to better understanding many diseases.

Research into these microbes and their impact on our health has exploded in the last decade. While traditionally the study of microbes has considered their role as pathogens — disease promoting organisms — the focus of this new research is more holistic.

Read more here.

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