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When your gut microbiome helps determine friends and family

This is quite interesting…

For honey bees, this study shows that the microbiome plays a critical role in defining the tightly regulated chemical signals for group membership.

Until recently, most scientists thought that honey bees identified nestmates by picking up on a homogenized scent that they recognize from members of their own colony — “a kind of hive B.O.,” Ben-Shahar joked.

This new work is significant in part because it shows an integral role for the microbiome in the essential, everyday social interactions of honey bees…

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