Thursday, March 29, 2012

Being in a room adds 37 million bacteria per hour

Bacteria are all around us, and are impossible to get rid of. They cover our entire skin, float around in the air, and inhabit places that we would argue to be inhabitable. Scientists from Yale University have found another bacterial fun fact by discovering that your presence in a room adds 37 million bacteria per hour to the air. It is a good thing that most bacterial species do not cause disease.

Actually, most of the bacteria that are launched into the air come from the floor. When people walk around a room it makes dust fly up into the air, which includes attached bacteria. Nevertheless, a portion of the microbes are derived from your own body. Around 18 percent of the bacterial species found during the study are derived from human skin, which shows that your own emission plays a significant role. Scientists found Propionibacterineae to be the most prevalent, which is commonly known as a skin bacterium.

Air quality
According to the scientists, their study helps us improve air quality. Despite the fact that bacteria flying around is normal and cannot be prevented, it is good to know how bacterial emission works. In the case of an infection spreading through air, the researchers think knowledge about the dynamics of a room in terms of bacterial emission helps us devise ways to improve air quality.

Thankfully, only a small proportion of the bacterial species can cause disease in humans. Potentially, these small microbes could be wiping us all out. We are simply fortunate that they are not very interested in nesting in our organs. Some bacterial species do cause disease, and it is hypothesized that 90 percent of the infections are acquired indoors, which sheds some light upon the relevance of this study. 

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