What I Learned in Microbiology

Published: August 2, 2016

Who would have thought that science really had so much to do with aging?  Not me, until I read this article from sciencenews.org. They explain that while there is still a hearty debate regarding what the true cause of aging is, scientist do have some good theories to follow up on.  One is that as you get older, the proteins and cells in your body start to deteriorate and actually get to a point where they can no longer replenish! Another possible cause is that oxidants getting churned out by mitochondria are having a chemically corrosive quality that becomes compounded over time. Yet others think that within our DNA can be found milestones, which act as a biological clock and determine how quickly we actually age. This seems to be a hot debate, though, as to why we truly age and why no one can stop it.

In Microbiology we learn that we all have healthy micro biota that lives inside of us. You can even buy food with that healthy stuff in it, to help digestion and replenish what is in your system already! We have this microbiota in our gut, on our skin, and genital areas; and for the most part it is good for you, or inert and just there. When we age though, this bacteria becomes more dangerous for our bodies than good; it makes us more susceptible to getting sick from this bacteria. When we get older, things slow down (such as bowel and mucous secretions) which is bad, because that natural barrier of protection is lessened, making the elderly more susceptible to infectious diseases entering.

Aging is a hard thing for people to wrap their heads around mentally. It is natural to not want to get older and have to deal with everything that comes with it. Science also shows that aging can really be kind of a scary thing, especially if you don’t take care of yourself. Microbiology has really shown me that my body is a living science project, that we are constantly exposed to things daily, and how much it really takes our cells to do things that we just take for granted. Our bodies are made completely of cells, and while powerful they aren’t invincible.

CWI Student


Curtis, David. "A Healthy Old Age May Trump Immortality." Science News. Society for Science and Public Health, 23 July 2016. Web. 24 July 2016.

Zapata, Heidi, Md. "The Microbiota and Microbiome in Aging: Potential Implications in Health and Age-related Diseases." The Microbiota and Microbiomein Aging: Potential Implications in Health and Age-related Diseases. Online Geriatr Soc., 11 Oct. 2011. Web. 27 July 2016.

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