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This marks a significant shift in emphasis in the health research agenda and a return to the perspective recognised by Pasteur on his deathbed that his colleague Claude Bernard was right in arguing 'the terrain is all' http://www.functionalmedicineuniversity.com/public/937.cfm
An urgent primary focus of the new microbiome research agenda must be to understand the impact of the ubiquitous use of antibiotics on the human and animal microbiome. There is a growing body of evidence linking antibiotic use in humans and in the animal food industry with the chronic diseases of today i.e. obesity, type 2 diabetes and cancer. If this is proven to be so, then it adds even more urgency to the need to vastly reduce antimicrobial prescribing. Problems of antimicrobial resistance, lack of antibiotic effectiveness and the creation of superbugs may pale beside the far greater impact antibiotics may be having in contributing to the disturbance of the microbiome giving rise to these 'epidemic' chronic diseases.
No competing interests
18 May 2016
Stephen J Gordon
School House, Market Place, Kenninghall Norfolk NR16 2AH