Blog readers may be interested in an article – ‘Small Small World’ – in the January 2013 edition of National Geographic magazine [http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2013/01/microbes/wolfe-text ]. This fascinating article by Nathan Wolfe* looks at the microbial community hosted by the human body, referring to it as a shadow world that has not yet been fully explored. Wolfe discusses such organisms such as Staphylococcus (lives in the nostrils), Lactobacillus johnsonii (helps us to digest milk), Helicobacter pylori (regulates immune cells in the stomach) and cyanobacteria (responsible for photosynthesis).
In the magazine, the article covers twelve pages illustrated with stunning photography and impressive graphical information.
DWS Microbiologist Gill Iredale recommends the article to readers, saying:
“This is an easy to understand article for the non-microbiologist explaining how bacteria and viruses are integral to the functioning of every type of flora and fauna on the planet. The photographic illustrations of bacteria are outstanding, giving substance to these microscopic entities that most people have never seen. It is humbling to realise that we could not exist without the microbes that support us, when more often than not they are thought of as foe not friend.”
There is a free National Geographic app for iPad available – just search for National Geographic Magazine on your device.
*Nathan Wolfe is a Stanford University Microbiologist, founder of Global Viral, author of The Viral Storm and CEO of Metabiota.