Microbial Inhabitants of Humans - Their Ecology and Role in Health and Disease

Michael Wilson 
CUP  February 2005  

Hardback   476 pages  ISBN 9780521841580      £53.00
This advanced textbook provides a unique overview of the microbial communities (normal indigenous microbiota) inhabiting those regions of the human body that are exposed to the external environment, including the skin, eyes, oral cavity and the respiratory, urinary, reproductive and gastrointestinal tracts. In order to understand why particular organisms are able to colonise an anatomical region and why the resulting microbial community has a particular composition, an ecological approach is essential. Consequently, the key anatomical and physiological characteristics of each body site are described throughout the book. The crucial roles of the indigenous microbiota in protecting against exogenous pathogens, regulating the development of our immune system and mucosae, and providing nutrients are also discussed. The involvement of these organisms in infections of healthy and debilitated individuals are discussed throughout and methods of manipulating the composition of the indigenous microbiota for the benefit of human health are also described.
  • Ecological approach to describing the origin and nature of the microbial communities living on humans
  • Emphasizes the important benefits to humans of these microbial communities
  • Describes the wide range of diseases caused by indigenous microbes
Of interest to those taking courses in Microbiology, Infectious Diseases, Microbiology of Infectious Diseases, Medical Microbiology, Health Sciences, Human Biology, Microbial Ecology.


  • 1. An introduction to the human-microbe symbiosis;
  • 2. The skin and its indigenous microbiota;
  • 3. The eye and its indigenous microbiota;
  • 4. The respiratory system and its indigenous microbiota;
  • 5. The urinary system and its indigenous microbiota;
  • 6. The reproductive system and its indigenous microbiota;
  • 7. The gastrointestinal tract and its indigenous microbiota;
  • 8. The oral cavity and its indigenous microbiota;
  • 9. Role of the indigenous microbiota in maintaining human health;
  • 10. Manipulation of the indigenous microbiota.
To find similar publications, click on a keyword below:
Cambridge University Press : disease control : ecology : human health : microbiology

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