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The Secret World Of Microbes

They live in every nook and cranny of your body, from your belly button to your armpits. A new exhibit at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences explores the secret world of human microbes. Host Frank Stasio speaks with biologists Julie Horvath and Rob Dunnabout the implications of microbial diversity for human health, and about Frank’s own armpit ecosystem.

Stasio swabbed his armpits live on Facebook, at the museum's Genomics and Microbiology Research Lab. Horvath then cultured his armpit microbes in the lab to create colonies showcasing microbial variety . Horvath says human armpit microbes are less diverse than primates, pointing to differences in both evolution and daily activities. Stasio's armpit plates are on display at the exhibit, along with plates from other local personalities. That exhibit runs until March 12, 2017.

Laura Pellicer is a digital reporter with WUNC’s small but intrepid digital news team.
Longtime NPR correspondent Frank Stasio was named permanent host of The State of Things in June 2006. A native of Buffalo, Frank has been in radio since the age of 19. He began his public radio career at WOI in Ames, Iowa, where he was a magazine show anchor and the station's News Director.
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