chapter  1
Microflora of the Human Body
WithMahmoud A. Ghannoum, Samir S. Radwan
Pages 22

This chapter describes the indigenous normal flora with regard to its distribution, entrance into, and exit from the body. It discusses the relation of the microorganisms to the adherence of Candida. The human skin is directly exposed to air and consequently to airborne microorganisms. However, the skin surface is not a suitable habitat for microbial activity. Although dead cells and skin secretions may provide adequate nutrients for commensal microorganisms, the moisture content is normally too low and thus represents a limiting factor for the growth of microorganisms. Several bacteria are capable of liberating fatty acids from skin glycerides; these fatty acids are known to inhibit Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus. S. Selwyn described the carriage of antibiotic-producing organisms on human skin and showed how such organisms may protect the carrier against colonization of potential pathogens such as Staphylococcus aureus.