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micro- +‎ biome or microbiota +‎ genome


microbiome (plural microbiomes)

  1. The genetic information (genomes) of a microbiota.
    • 2012 August 1, “Defining the Human Microbiome”, in Nutrition Reviews, volume 70, number Suppl. 1, page S38–S44:
      The human microbiota consists of the 10-100 trillion symbiotic microbial cells harbored by each person, primarily bacteria in the gut; the human microbiome consists of the genes these cells harbor.
  2. A microbial biome, such as the community of microbes within the human gut.
    • 2013 June 29, “A punch in the gut”, in The Economist, volume 407, number 8842, page 72-3:
      Mostly, the microbiome is beneficial. It helps with digestion and enables people to extract a lot more calories from their food than would otherwise be possible. Research over the past few years, however, has implicated it in diseases from atherosclerosis to asthma to autism.
    • 2014 July, “Second Genome”, in Life Science Leader, volume 6, number 7, page 14:
      The microbiome creates the immediate environment for our genes as they play out their part in disease mechanisms.

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