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What are gut bacteria?

ANSWER

Living inside of your gut are 300 to 500 different kinds of bacteria containing nearly 2 million genes. Paired with other tiny organisms like viruses and fungi, they make what’s known as the microbiota, or the microbiome. Like a fingerprint, each person's microbiota is unique: The mix of bacteria in your body is different from everyone else's mix. It’s determined partly by your mother’s microbiota -- the environment that you’re exposed to at birth -- and partly from your diet and lifestyle. The bacteria live throughout your body, but the ones in your gut may have the biggest impact on your well-being. They line your entire digestive system. Most live in your intestines and colon. They affect everything from your metabolism to your mood to your immune system.

SOURCES:

Eamonn Quigley, MD, chief of the division of gastroenterology and hepatology, Houston Methodist Hospital.

Quigley, E. , September 2013. Gastroenterology & Hepatology

Baron, S. , University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, 1996. Medical Microbiology

Singh, V. , December 2015. Cell Metabolism

Sartor, R. , 2012. American Journal of Gastroenterology Supplements

Burns, M. , June 2015. Genome Medicine

Mayer, E. , July 2011. Nature Reviews Neuroscience

Carabotti, M. , April-June 2015. Annals of Gastroenterology

Scher, J. , November 2013. Elife

Sonnenburg, E. January 2016. Nature,

Clarke, S. , June 2014. Gut

Reviewed by Smitha Bhandari on May 20, 2018

WAS THIS ANSWER HELPFUL

SOURCES:

Eamonn Quigley, MD, chief of the division of gastroenterology and hepatology, Houston Methodist Hospital.

Quigley, E. , September 2013. Gastroenterology & Hepatology

Baron, S. , University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, 1996. Medical Microbiology

Singh, V. , December 2015. Cell Metabolism

Sartor, R. , 2012. American Journal of Gastroenterology Supplements

Burns, M. , June 2015. Genome Medicine

Mayer, E. , July 2011. Nature Reviews Neuroscience

Carabotti, M. , April-June 2015. Annals of Gastroenterology

Scher, J. , November 2013. Elife

Sonnenburg, E. January 2016. Nature,

Clarke, S. , June 2014. Gut

Reviewed by Smitha Bhandari on May 20, 2018

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