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Parents Tend to Share More Bacteria With Family Dogs Than Children

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As much as dog owners love their children, they tend to share more of themselves, at least in terms of bacteria, with their canine cohorts rather than their kids.

That is just one finding of a new study led by the University of Colorado Boulder that looked at the types and transfer modes of microbes from the guts, tongues, foreheads and palms (or paws) of members of 60 American families, including canines. Identifying how such bacterial communities can be affected by environmental exposure may help scientists better understand how they can be manipulated to prevent or treat disease, say CU-Boulder Associate Professor Rob Knight and CU-Boulder doctoral student Se Jin Song, the study leaders.

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