Your body has 10x more bacterial cells than human ones


11 Responses to “Your body has 10x more bacterial cells than human ones”

  1. DougO says:

    Most of the bacteria are on the inside not the outside of our bodies, and most of the bacteria are “friendly,” that is “not infectious.” Instead of trying to wash bacteria off (futile by the way), we should be encouraging a healthy ecosystem of good bacteria to live on our bodies in order to deprive the bad bacteria of resources and keep their population low.

    I predict that in the future we will be buying all sorts of products with beneficial bacteria, not just yogurt, but also armpit juice, kitchen cleanser, etc.

    Search for “competitive exclusion” bacteria.

  2. shhiggins says:

    Since we likely evolved from bacteria in the first place I would think that all of our genes are bacterial in origin.

  3. Kenan says:

    We’re actually just highly-evolved hosts for the bacteria. The bacteria in humans has found the best host to spread itself around the globe, making it perhaps the most successful organism on this planet! Bacteria in other species must gaze on with envy.

  4. bakermiller says:

    ^^We’re actually just highly-evolved bacteria.

  5. Ian Holmes says:

    Um, “claims that”? This is well known. They also contain orders of magnitude more genes than the human genome, especially genes responsible for sugar metabolism. See e.g. recent paper in Science on the human microbiome.

  6. kirbyk says:

    Not me. My bacteria count goes to 11x!

    (Maybe I should bathe more often.)

  7. bobagamemnon says:

    See Grant Morrison, “The Filth”

  8. Keneke says:

    Which bacteria will protect my teeth instead of eat away at them, and which will make my underarms smell good instead of bad when I sweat?

  9. doggo says:

    GAAAAHHHH! mmmmmGERMS!!!

  10. rhebner says:

    That there are only 10x more bacteria cells than human cells is a gross underestimate. (no pun intended).

    The population of bacterial cells is generally agreed to be 10^14. That’s 100000000000000x more bacteria cells than human cells. (Tannock, 1995)

    Also, the number of genes with bacterial origins is more like 223 (Relman, 2001)

    Microflora are awesome!

  11. The Unusual Suspect says:

    So a quick way to lose weight would be to mega-dose with antibiotics?


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