Gut Check

The bacteria in your intestines are welcome guests

By John Travis, 15:49 PM April 15, 2008

New York and London are famous for both their congestion and the diverse origins of their residents. But if you're looking for the ultimate teeming metropolis of immigrants, check out the large intestine. In people, some 500 to 1,000 kinds of bacteria reside in this part of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract, and these gut microbes outnumber all the cells in your body, perhaps by as much as a factor of 10.

 BACTERIAL BOOST. The intestinal blood vessel system (green) of a germfree mouse (left) is less mature than that of mice colonized by typical gut microbes (middle) or Bacteriodes thetaiotaomicron alone (right).

BACTERIAL BOOST. The intestinal blood vessel system (green) of a germfree mouse (left) is...

Source URL: https://www.sciencenews.org/article/gut-check?mode=magazine&context=404