Ed Yong - I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life
Once known simply as “germs” and feared as disease-carriers, microorganisms are now known to perform a wide range of beneficial functions in their particular ecosystems; in fact, these life-sustaining organisms far outnumber the pathogens. In his first book, Yong, who covers science for The Atlantic and writes the National Geographic blog, “Not Exactly Rocket Science,” gives readers a tour of these microbiomes, one of which is the human body. Inhabited by an astonishing number of microscopic specialists, the human biome could almost be considered a vital organ itself, one which enables our metabolism, regulates our immune system, and even helps determine certain behaviors. As we learn more, research scientists foresee medical treatments based on ecosystem transplants and artisanal bacteria.