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Merriam-Webster Welcomes 'Microbiome' To The English Language

100 billion bacteria get added to the dictionary.

11/02/2017 3:07 AM AEDT | Updated 11/02/2017 3:07 AM AEDT
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Gut bacteria have been enjoying a moment in the spotlight, with an explosion of new research pointing to the microbiome as a key player in a host of physical and mental health conditions

In addition to a legitimate medical concept, the microbiome is a huge trend that’s spurred countless books, supplements, diet trends and even at-home testing kits. Now, it looks like that trend is officially here to stay.

This week, Merriam-Webster added “microbiome” to the English dictionary, defining the noun as “a community of microorganisms (such as bacteria, fungi, and viruses) that inhabit a particular environment and especially the collection of microorganisms living in or on the human body.” 

The dictionary’s more than 1,000 additions also include the somewhat less scientific “binge-watch,” “Seussian” and “face-palm.”  

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