Computers, Science & Technology

Your mouth is home to a bacterial cityscape 你的嘴巴是细菌城市景观的家园

2022-04-03 14:17:50 simyang 0

Your mouth is home to a bacterial cityscape

JESSICA MARK WELCH, ASSOCIATE SCIENTIST AT THE MARINE BIOLOGICAL LABORATORY IN WOODS HOLE

  • Popular      Science

  • 21      Sep 2020


Bacteria run the world, and even though they’re all around us and seemingly crucial to the function of every single biological ecosystem, we still know little about them. Understanding how a big and diverse population of microorganisms relates to itself and its environment—particularly how each one is distributed within the space it occupies—will help us better grasp the dynamics behind complex microbial networks affecting the well-being of all living creatures.


The human mouth is one of the most densely packed bacterial hot-spots anyone’s ever studied, so my colleagues and I scraped the tongues of 21 volunteers and placed the gunk onto microscope slides. Using data from the Human Microbiome Project, we identified the 17 most abundant kinds of bacteria and attached a dye that gave each one a different color when we shined a laser on them.


The resulting image resembled a city skyline, with microbial stacks jutting outward from each tongue cell. Actinomyces and Rothia—which play a key role in turning food’s nitrate into nitric oxide that helps regulate blood pressure—showed up in just about every sample. The former stayed close to a cell’s center while the latter resided near the edge. Now we want to figure out why they are distributed this way.


你的嘴巴是细菌城市景观的家园

伍兹霍尔海洋生物实验室副研究员 21 92020 细菌统治着世界,尽管它们就在我们身边,似乎对每个生物生态系统的功能都至关重要,但我们仍然对它们知之甚少。解一个庞大而多样化的微生物种群如何与自身及其环境相关 - 特别是每个微生物在其所据的空间中的分布 - 将有助于我们更好地掌握影响所有生物福祉的复杂微生物网络背后的动态。 人类的口腔是任何人研究过的最密集的细菌热点之一,所以我和我的同事刮了21名志愿者的舌头,并将液放在显微镜上。用人类微生物组项目的数据,我们确定了17种最丰富的细菌,并附着种染料,当我们用光照它们时,每种细菌都会产生不同的颜色。 由此产生的图像类似于城市天线,微生物堆从每个舌细胞向外伸出。放线菌和罗氏- 在将食物的硝酸盐转化为有助于调节血压的一氧化氮方面起着关键作用 - 几乎出现在每个样品中。前者靠近细胞的中心,而后者靠近边缘。在我们想弄清楚为什么它们以这种方式分发。

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