Chapter 3 : The Human Microbiome and Clinical Immunology

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Humans, in many respects, are not single organisms, but more like coral reefs, complex assemblages of myriad diverse creatures. The human microbiota, the bugs living in association with humans, contains more cells than comprise the human body itself (1). Like the fish on a reef, the microbes interact with each other, sometimes competing and sometimes collaborating, to form a complex and resilient food web. Some of the population promote the growth and development of the reef, while others consume the reef material, turning the hard corals to sand.

Citation: Bushman F. 2016. The Human Microbiome and Clinical Immunology, p 19-25. In Detrick B, Schmitz J, Hamilton R (ed), Manual of Molecular and Clinical Laboratory Immunology, Eighth Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818722.ch3
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Image of FIGURE 1

Clustering of bacterial communities by body site analyzed using UniFrac. Each dot represents one human microbiome sample, characterized by deep sequencing of 16S tags from the V1V2 region of the gene. Each sample was characterized using a few thousand sequence reads. PC indicates principal coordinates.

Citation: Bushman F. 2016. The Human Microbiome and Clinical Immunology, p 19-25. In Detrick B, Schmitz J, Hamilton R (ed), Manual of Molecular and Clinical Laboratory Immunology, Eighth Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555818722.ch3
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