February 21, 2021

Illustration of the diversity of bacteriophage viruses of the human gut microbiome

An article published in the journal “Cell” reports the discovery of over 140,000 bacteriophage viruses that live in the human guts, added to a new database called the Gut Phage Database (GPD). A team of researchers led by Dr. Luis Camarillo-Guerrero of the Wellcome Sanger Institute analyzed more than 28,000 gut microbiome samples collected from different parts of the world to detect bacteriophage viruses using metagenomics. Over half of the viruses identified were unknown so far. These viruses attack bacteria, so they can help the body’s immune responses.