What is the microbiome?

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What is the microbiome?

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The human microbiome is an organ because of its unique qualities. In recent years there has been an explosion in the understanding of the human microbiome. Advances in technologies and analysis around metagenomics have enhanced human microbiome research and its connection to both health and disease. There have been an estimated 100 trillion microbes living in our gut. The human microbiome includes large communities of bacteria, viruses, and fungi, and the complexity is greater than the entire human genome. The biome has extended functions such as developing immunity, defense against pathogens, and host nutrition to produce fatty acids essential in gathering energy and metabolism. The biome also handles the synthesis of vitamins and fat storage, which impacts human behavior, making it a vital organ of the body without which we would not function correctly. The microbiome plays a vital role in:

  • metabolism

  • resistance to infection

  • resistance to inflammation

  • immune system development

  • effect the gut to brain axis

  • synthesis of vitamins K and B12

  • prevention against pathogens

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