Understanding the ecosystem within us
Our health depends on the integrity of the microbiota, the ecosystem of bacteria, viruses and fungi that populate our body.
The number of microorganisms we harbor is greater than the number of our cells, and their DNA is collectively 100 times our own: it should come as no surprise that these organisms are involved in many physiological processes happening every moment in our organs and tissues.
At the same time, both the microorganisms that live within us and the ones that populate our environment – often hidden in animal reservoirs – can be extremely dangerous to our health.
In Humanitas we study the biology of bacteria, viruses and fungi, the way they interact with our cells, starting from the immune system, and the way they behave as dynamic populations under the geometrical and physical constraints of our bodies.