Monday, January 20, 2014

Selfmade cheese

One cheese exhibit at the Grow Your Own…Life After Nature exhibition at the Science Gallery Dublin in Trinity College Dublin comes from human bacteria found in toes, armpits, and belly buttons. Selfmade features different “microbial sketches” of cheeses created with bacteria samples from various people. Each cheese supposedly smells similar to the donor’s body odor. The team took different microbial strains from the subjects. Next, they identified microbes that made up that person’s specific scent using a method known as headspace gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis, which can find volatile organic compounds in a sample. Then, the cheese making process began. Milk was added to the microbe sample, and spoiled with a bacteria called Lactobacillus. When the sample curdled, the team separated the clumps and aged them with yeast to make different varieties of cheese. The scientists do insist however these cheeses are not for human consumption .

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