Humans (genus Homo) and chimpanzees and bonobos (genus Pan) share roughly 99% of their DNA. But that doesn’t necessarily mean we share the same bacteria. An organism’s microbiome — that is, all the microorganisms that live in or on the body — is shaped not just by genetics, but also by diet and the environment. Indeed, the exact composition of the human microbiome differs from person to person, and it can even change within an individual over time. Currently, it’s unclear if there even exists a “core microbiome” that all humans share.
Combined with the fact that our three species have tremendous differences in diet and lifestyle (e.g., humans typically don’t live in trees or throw feces at each other), we might predict very few similarities in our microbiomes. And that would be exactly right.
Read the full, original story here: How Does Human Saliva Compare to a Chimp’s?