• A field of bacteria
  • A field of bacteria

    A mixed bacterial population. Image courtsey of Gary Borrisy

  • At the sequencing center
  • At the sequencing center

    Technicians at work at the sequencing center

  • A digitized phage plaque


Each of us lives in association with vast numbers of microbes that colonize our bodies and influence our long-term health. Many trillions of microbes—too small to be seen by the naked eye--live in our guts and elsewhere on our bodies.  These microbes contribute to health by helping with digestion, guiding growth of our immune systems, and shouldering out invading pathogens.  Humans individuals differ greatly in the composition of their microbiota, and evidence suggests that distinctive populations in each of us influence our health in unique ways.  For example, clearing out the gut through use of antibiotics can lead to new colonization with the pathogen Clostridium difficile.  This can be treated with transplantation of stool from a healthy donor.  The human microbiota has been reported to influence risk of heart disease, cancer, autism, obesity, inflammatory bowel diseases, and many others.

The PennCHOP Microbiome Program

The University of Pennsylvania and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia have launched a Microbiome Program to take advantage of new research in this area to advance the health of children and adults.  You too can be a part of this exciting effort.  You can learn more about our programs here.  Opportunities for philanthropy are here.


PennCHOP Microbiome 2017 Pilot & Feasibility Projects
We would like to congratulate those selected for 2017 Pilot & Feasibility Project funding, and thank all those who applied.
Please click here to see a full project listing.

Penn Promotes Retreat 2017: Sex Differences & the Microbiome
April 28th, 2017 / 12:30-6:30pm / Hall of Flags (Houston Hall, University of Pennsylvania)

Keynote Address by Jacques Ravel, PhD 
"Interactions between the host, the vaginal microbiota, and sexually transmitted pathogens"

Please click here for event details and registration information.

The Fourth Annual PennCHOP Microbiome Program Symposium will be held on November 9th, 2017.  
PennVet will be sponsoring a Keynote Speaker the evening of November 8th, 2017.  
Please stay tuned for event updates. 

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