Tag Archives: Parasite

The bacteria in your belly Pt. 3 – Disrupting the balance

ResearchBlogging.orgIn the previous two posts we have established how the microbiome is established and then the pressures the host puts on it to maintain a balance between the required functions and the commensal bacteria providing them. In this post I want to look a little deeper at what happens if this balance is disturbed or never properly forms at all. Continue reading


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The Wednesday Post (24/11/10)

This post is a bit of a cop out. I hadn’t planned anything because I was going to re-spruik my most recent effort at the Scientific American.

This time I wrote about the role a bacteria, nematodes and insects play in glowing war wounds. You can find the post here and of course my previous post is still here. Both can still be shared using the not-so-fancy share buttons at the bottom.

Once again thanks to BoraZ (@BoraZ for twitterers) for inviting me to contribute.



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The bacteria in your belly Pt. 2 – Adults


In the last post I talked about babies eating poo how babies develop a gut flora. In this post I wanted to look at how that flora matures into adulthood.

As a baby grows it interacts with its environment and after about a year an infant’s flora will resemble their parent’s. This becomes particularly important as the baby starts to eat solid foods and no longer survives on a milk diet. Now any and all bacteria can have a shot at colonising. So what shapes the bacterial population from this point onwards? Tolerance dictates this uneasy state of play. Continue reading


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The bacteria in your belly Pt.1 – Babies


From one series to another it seems. For the next few of my posts I want to look at how the gut flora develops in infants and changes throughout life. We have mentioned the gut flora before but its role in maintaining the human condition is becoming more involved the more we look as we find that the bacterial hitch-hikers in our bellies are not simply the parasites they were once considered to be.

In this post I shall discuss the development of the gut flora in infants and its role in determining paediatric disease but in future posts I will talk about what happens when this process is altered and the adult microbiome.

Pictured: Science

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The Wednesday Post (29/09/10)

ResearchBlogging.orgIn order to stay up to date in my field of research I have generated a number of automated searches at places like PubMed that alert me when my keywords appear in published work. I also have subscribed to the ‘electronic tables of contents’ for a number of journals. This makes finding papers for my work very easy but sometimes I happen to scan across something that takes my fancy. Continue reading

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Guest Post – Toxoplasmosis and Evil Cats

One possible way for me to finish my PhD, is to publish three first author articles. So unless I’ve grossly misunderstood the context; I present to you my second DOTW! guest article.

My second greatest fear in life is being mediocre. What’s my greatest fear you ask? Getting a job and leaving the life of study. I want to achieve something before I’m put in a wooden box and forgotten about. So the fact that I haven’t yet cured cancer or even saved anybody’s life leads me to ask, what scientific reason could there be for my lack of world domination?

Like a lot of great thinkers, I instinctively took umbrage at my cat.

Cat me if you can: It

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Hydatid cysts – May cause face explosion.

While visiting a house of a friend whom had recently acquired a very cute little puppy, I lost all manly control and started playing with the dog. During the tussle, the puppy vehemently licked my face. Obviously consumed with jealousy, my girlfriend quipped that I should not let the dog lick my face lest I become infected with hydatids and my face explodes. Having no idea what hydatids were and being interested in the face-explosion aspect of it, I looked into it further.

The perceived threat, a.k.a. Indy (Photo taken by Lael Woodham)

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