Wednesday, March 11, 2015


Pop quiz: What do you know about microbes?

New Zealand-born Rob Knight, winner of a Vilcek Prize for Creative Promise in Biomedical Science, devotes much of his research to microbes, the single-celled microorganisms found everywhere from the deserts to the oceans.  Although small in stature, microbes are proving to be game changers in everything from healthcare to forensic science to wildlife conservation. Take this pop quiz to see what you know about microbes.

1. On average, the collective microbes in a human body weigh as much as:
a) A white blood cell
b) A pea
c) A human brain
d) A bowling ball

2. New research is showing links between a person’s gut microbiome (the microbial community found within the digestive tract) and his or her:
a) Mental health
b) Allergies
c) Digestive system
d) All of the above

3. The average number of microbes found in and on the human body is over:
a) One thousand
b) One million
c) One billion
d) One trillion

Quiz Answers

Vilcek Foundation