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Exactly How Do You Collect 12,000 Microbial Samples From a Hospital?

Last month I wrote about the Hospital Microbiome project, Jack Gilbert’s ambitious project to catalog the bacterial species growing in the hospital before it opens and monitor how that environment changes after doctors and patients start interacting with it. Over the next two years, he and his team will be collecting more than 12,000 samples from doctors, patients, countertops, floors, doorknobs and faucets. That sounds like a lot of work, so I tagged along with Daniel Smith, PhD, from Argonne National Laboratory and the Institute for Genomics and Systems Biology one day to see just how they do it. As you can see in the video above, they’re going to need a lot of Q-tips.

About Matt Wood

Matt Wood is the editor of the Science Life blog and the social media specialist for the University of Chicago Medicine.

One comment on “Exactly How Do You Collect 12,000 Microbial Samples From a Hospital?

  1. [...] As the year came to a close, we found a nifty design feature in our new hospital that helps keep immunosuppressed patients safe. Mark Lockwood and Kathy Davis designed a web form to help filter potential kidney donors. Sliman Bensmaia showed how our sense of touch is a lot like the way we hear, and we tagged along with Daniel Smith from the Hospital Microbiome project while he collected samples from the Center for Care and Discovery. [...]

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