27 June is World MIicrobiome Day

Microbiomes have many essential functions in the environments they live in. Researchers are uncovering more and more about what they do, and why this is so important to maintain the balance and health of their environment. For example, trillions of microorganisms live in and on our body (skin, mouth, lungs, intestines,…) where they actively help protect us from infections by fighting off bad bacteria, among other things. They also help us digest food, and produce vitamins and hormones that are essential for our health. Microbiomes can also be found in the soil, where they help plants to grow. They do this by fixing nitrogen – a gas from the atmosphere – in the soil and converting it into a form that plants can use for growth. Microbiomes of the ocean produce most of the oxygen we breathe and can absorb as much carbon dioxide as plants on land.

Together microbiomes are actively contributing to clean environments, sustaining food systems, mitigating climate change and keeping people healthy. Therefore, we invite you to participate in World Microbiome Day and help us increase microbiome literacy in society.

Several GROWTH projects investigate the effect of the gut microbiome on health and diseaes in preterm and term infants at risk for sepsis and necrotizing enterocolitis.