Microbial communities and their role in human life

Ivankov, Ana-Maria (2011) Microbial communities and their role in human life. Bachelor's thesis, Faculty of Science > Department of Biology.

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The human body possesses one of the most complex microbial ecosystems. Microbiota have been found in the skin, mouth, nose, ears, vagina and intestinal tract. Each person has an unique composition of microbial community. They are important because they perform functions that humans failed to get through evolution. Studies that examine the complexity of these ecosystems were recently performed using conventional techniques that involve breeding of microbes in culture. It is estimated that less than 1% of bacteria can breed standard cultivation techniques. Metagenomics and methods based on 16S rRNA sequences have revolutionized the understanding of microbial diversity. Microbiota contribute to host nutrition by increasing the efficiency of harvesting energy and synthesizing essential vitamins. They affect proliferation and differentiation of epithelial cells, pH, and the development of the immune system. Create a physical barrier of defense against pathogens and produce antibacterial peptides. Immediately after birth each person develops a complex and active intestinal ecosystem in the previously sterile environment. Compositions are dependent on the type of birth and diet in the first months of life. Proven advantage of vaginal delivery is better than Cesarean section and that breast-feeding is better than commercial baby food. When the composition of the microbiota is disturbed, it can lead to various diseases: IBD, autism, allergies, asthma, type 2 diabetes, ect. Composition of the microbiota can be disrupted by inadequate diet and antibiotics. Composition of the microbiota can be manipulated using probiotics, prebiotics, antibiotics and some drugs. In this way, communities can return to homeostasis.

Item Type: Thesis (Bachelor's thesis)
Supervisor: Ivančić Baće, Ivana
Date: 2011
Number of Pages: 16
Subjects: NATURAL SCIENCES > Biology
Divisions: Faculty of Science > Department of Biology
Depositing User: Silvana Šehić
Date Deposited: 29 Oct 2014 10:04
Last Modified: 29 Oct 2014 10:04
URI: http://digre.pmf.unizg.hr/id/eprint/3213

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