Call it confirmation bias, but it seems like nearly everything we investigate in these blogs circles back to that good old microbiome!
Everyone’s favourite bacterial colony (that actually makes up about 90% of, well, everybody) is just starting to be studied in real depth. As we become aware that the health of the bacteria that live in us and on us is closely related to our health, we’re starting to trace solutions to previously mysterious problems. Researchers from Cornell University have found in the state of subjects’ microbiomes a possible source for the pernicious and inscrutable Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. In a recent study published in the Journal Microbiome, they lay out their findings:
“‘Our work demonstrates that the gut bacterial microbiome in chronic fatigue syndrome patients isn’t normal, perhaps leading to gastrointestinal and inflammatory symptoms in victims of the disease,’ said Maureen Hanson, the Liberty Hyde Bailey Professor in the Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics at Cornell and the paper’s senior author. ‘Furthermore, our detection of a biological abnormality provides further evidence against the ridiculous concept that the disease is psychological in origin.’”
While still far from a smoking gun as to the source of CFS, the team is confident that narrowing it down to somewhere in the miocrobiome can only mean that we’re getting closer to full understanding of a condition that defies pinning down, and is estimated to affect up to 3% of the world’s population. And, if we can solve this mystery, who knows what else we can uncover in the depths of the bacteria colonies that call our bodies home?