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PODCAST. Sixth Science, episode 49: microbiota, our best health allies

Say rather microbiota – with an “s” – than microbiota because … there are several: intestinal, pulmonary, skin, genital … In fact, these living and all different worlds that coexist within our body, all made up of billions of bacteria, fungi and viruses, each play a fundamental role in protecting us from many diseases. For his 49e episode, Sixth Science explains all of this “terra incognita” under exploration.

The “good” bacteria among the billions that inhabit our organs

Good news, long unknown, these different ecosystems are just starting to reveal their secrets. Thus, researchers have managed to identify the “good” bacteria among the billions that inhabit our organs, that is to say those that can boost our immunity. At the microphone, Hugo Jalinière and Coralie Lemke, both journalists at Science and the Future exchange with Romain Gouloumès about 20 minutes.

All three explain to you how what we have called our “second brain”, the intestinal microbiota, could thus be considered as our second defense system.

The intestinal microbiota would directly shape the composition of the immune system

The proof with early work recently published in Nature in November 2020 which suggest for the first time in humans that the intestinal microbiota directly shapes the composition of the immune system. From there to imagining personalized prescriptions for microbes, there is only one step… which will however take a long time to be taken in practice. By the way, if you feel like “testing” your microbiota as suggested by many self-proclaimed “microbiota expert” laboratories, a piece of advice, don’t do it.

Because while many studies have suggested that the microbiota could serve as a diagnostic, prognostic or therapeutic marker, the level of evidence of this work remains largely insufficient. To date, no consensus has established the criteria for a “normal” microbiota and individual analyzes are therefore unusable.

According to the French National Society of Gastroenterology (SNFGE), these tests are therefore considered unnecessary and expensive to date. Unlike the subscription to Sixième Science, exciting and completely free. And if you want to know more about microbiota, go to your booth or on the website of Science and the Future to obtain the number dated April 2021.

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