Tuesday, February 6, 2007

New bacteria discovered on our skin

Human Skin Harbors Completely Unknown Bacteria ScienceDaily 1/5/07 "skin, the largest organ in our body, is a kind of zoo and some of the inhabitants are quite novel...182 species of bacteria in skin samples. Eight percent were unknown species ...It is the first study to identify the composition of bacterial populations on the skin using a powerful molecular method. Not only were the bacteria more diverse than previously estimated, but some of them had not been found before, says Martin J. Blaser, M.D., Frederick King ...Roughly half, or 54.4%, of the bacteria identified in the samples represented the genera Propionibacteria, Corynebacteria, Staphylococcus and Streptococcus, which have long been considered more or less permanent residents in human skin...Almost three-quarters, or 71.4%, of the total number of bacterial species were unique to individual subjects, suggesting that the skin surface is highly diversified in terms of the bacteria it harbors...women and men may harbor some different bacterial species on their skin...In each individual, the bacterial populations varied over time while revealing a core set of bacteria for each individual. "The predominant bacteria don't change much," says Dr. Gao. "But the more transient bacteria did change over time," ..."Some stay and others come and go""

Much more information at the article. Strange to think that we have been virtually oblivious to this world on our skin until recently.

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