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Medical News & Perspectives
May 21, 2008

Scientists Probe Microbe “Communities”

JAMA. 2008;299(19):2265. doi:10.1001/jama.299.19.2265

Atlanta—Trillions of anonymous microbes travel the human body, living side by side with human cells as ambassadors of good health or instigators of disease. Now, researchers are seeking to not only identify these microbial residents but also to better understand how they act as “communities” to influence disease processes.

During the International Conference on Emerging Infectious Diseases here in March, a trio of researchers discussed how technological advances are pushing diagnostics toward the discovery of new pathogens as well as toward new ways of looking at how and why these microbes cause human illness.