Microbiome able to predict illness and lifespanTwo new #microbiome studies were published last month both concluding that analysis of the human microbiome is more accurate in determining the individual’s risk of certain diseases and lifespan than their human genome would be. The first study was conducted by the Harvard Medical School and found that overall, an individual’s microbiome was 20% better in predicting disease than the DNA in their human genome, it was also found to be 50% more accurate at predicting colorectal cancer than the genome. In the second study, conducted in Finland, the focus was placed on finding a link between a person’s microbiome and their life span. Here researchers found that individuals whose microbiome contained a greater number of certain species of bacteria were 15% more likely to die within the following 15 years.

Bugs, Guts and Research

Tuesday, 18 October 2011 by

For the majority of the last 100 years the role of bacteria in human health has been explored in terms of risk to health and well-being, the ‘bad bug = bad health’ paradigm. The result has been a combination of remarkable benefits against infectious related deaths and a slow but steady development of chronic non communicable diseases (CNCDs) – cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes and respiratory diseases now kill more people worldwide than all other diseases combined.

This rate of demise will continue to rise in the coming years as the global population ages, sedentary lifestyles and inappropriate food consumption continues to spread across the world.