Hand Me Microbe (and Slippers)


You can try to get far from the madding crowd. But it's a futile exercise. Wherever you go, you're a traveling trillion-ring circus of bacteria. In fact, you have more microbes on you and in you than you do human cells (and bathing won't help.) So come meet your closest neighbors, as scientists launch the mapping of the human microbiome.

Also, hearty microbes that thrive in extreme environments beyond your body... how the discovery of novel bacteria - archaea - has added a branch to the tree of life... and whoops - dropped that yummy cheese doodle on the floor? Find out why it's best left for the broom: new research that challenges the 5-second rule.


  • George Weinstock - microbiologist and co-director of the Human Genome Sequencing Center in Houston, Texas
  • Tim Friend - science journalist and author of The Third Domain: The Untold Story of Archaea and the Future of Biotechnology
  • John Moreau - geomicrobiologist with the US Geological Survey
  • Paul Dawson - microbiologist at Clemson University