From left to right: Bernhard Paetzold, S-Biomedic, Larry Weiss MD, Marie Drago, Gallinée, Jasmina Aganovic, Mother Dirt, Trevor Steyn, Esse, Chris Callewaert,

Our founder Marie Drago was a speaker at the first-ever Skin Microbiome Congress. For two days, she was also able to listen and learn about the crème de la crème of science. Here are her top 5 moments of wonder:

  • From S-Biomedic: Bernie (Microbiome people are all on a first name basis) rocked our world in the field of acne. It seems that the bacteria P. acnes that were always linked to acne might not always be the bad guy after all. P. acnes is one of the most common bacteria on the skin, and not everyone who has it develops acne. So what does it mean? It seems that only certain strains of the bacteria are linked to the inflammation.
  • From the lovely Dr. Armpit: Chris specialises in armpit odour, has an amazing Ted talk about it and a lot of cool jokes. What did we learn? Contrary to the rest of the body, microbiome diversity is rather bad in the armpit world and is linked to more odour. Using conventional deodorant will raise the diversity, so the rebound effect will be more odours! Chris spends a lot of time trying to transplant bacteria from non-smelly people to smelly people to see if we could cure BO that way. Science is sometimes demanding.
  • From Trevor from Essie Skincare: Only three species in the world produce sebum: Humans, Castors and Otters. And it’s not totally clear why we do. A hypothesis is that we produce it as a prebiotic, trying to attract and feed the right bacteria for us. Mind-blowing!
  • From Dana at ProDermIQ: this cool startup who does microbiome sampling can guess your age just by looking at your skin microbes. Oh, and it also says that you age one more year for each hour of sleep lost. That night everyone went to bed super early.
  • There was also a lot of heated discussions on what exactly is the microbiome? Is it legally part of the human body? What legally defines a human? Their genes or their cells? That’s the thing Marie loves the most about science, people happily admitting we don’t know everything, and looking for answers.

Then we all went for a drink because all the good things in life are made by bacteria: Alcohol, cheese and bread!

Thank you Kisaco research for organising this event, it was perfect!