Microbial guardians of skin health

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Science  18 Jan 2019:
Vol. 363, Issue 6424, pp. 227-228
DOI: 10.1126/science.aat4326

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Skin, our largest and outermost organ, faces numerous challenges, including wounds, infections, inflammatory disorders, and cancer. Fortunately, it does not meet these challenges alone. Our skin is home to complex microbial communities, the skin microbiota, that play a fundamental role in the protection and control of this barrier surface. Here, we focus on Staphylococcus epidermidis as a “poster child” of the skin microbiota to illustrate the remarkable diversity of functions a microbe can exert on skin physiology and health.