Jason Tetro
Since he was a teenager, Jason Tetro has called the laboratory his second home. His experience in microbiology and immunology has taken him into several fields including bloodborne, food and water pathogens; environmental microbiology; disinfection and antisepsis; and emerging pathogens such as SARS, avian flu, and Zika virus. He currently is a visiting scientist at the University of Guelph.

In the public, Jason is better known as The Germ Guy, and regularly offers his at times unconventional perspective on science in the media. Jason has written two books, The Germ Code, which was shortlisted as Science Book of The Year (2014) and The Germ Files, which spent several weeks on the national bestseller list. He has also co-edited, The Human Microbiome Handbook, which provides an academic perspective on the impact of microbes in human health. He lives in Toronto.

Entries by Jason Tetro

Discovering The Microbial Makeup Of Kefir

(0) Comments | Posted October 17, 2016 | 11:22 AM

If you've been in a grocery store or a farmer's market, you've no doubt seen kefir. The product is a fermented drink made usually with milk or juice. It has been around for thousands of years and is imbibed worldwide. As the name, which is an ancient word for "

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Here's Why People Avoid The Flu Vaccine

(30) Comments | Posted October 11, 2016 | 9:03 AM

By now Canadians should be seeing the annual promotions from public health officials for the flu vaccine. With winter on its way, various flu viruses will be making their way across our borders and into the respiratory tracts of millions. However, despite the advertisements, only about one-third of...

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5 Ways You Can Help Prevent The Post-Antibiotic Era

(0) Comments | Posted October 3, 2016 | 10:43 AM

By now, most Canadians are aware there is a problem with antibiotic resistance. Researchers and public health officials have sounded the alarm and the world taken notice. Both the World Health Organization and the United Nations have declared this phenomenon a crisis and asked all countries...

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When Influenza Attacks, It Causes A Cellular Coup d'État

(1) Comments | Posted September 26, 2016 | 11:38 AM

Although flu season has yet to begin in Canada, the threat is looming. Temperatures are dropping and soon, the virus will make its annual appearance. When this happens, hundreds of thousands will be infected with over 12 thousand requiring hospitalization and sadly, over three thousand succumbing to illness.

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What We Can Learn From Hillary Clinton's Pneumonia

(1) Comments | Posted September 19, 2016 | 9:54 AM

For most of this year, one infectious disease -- Zika -- has dominated the headlines. But last week, the virus took a back seat to a far more common ailment familiar to many Canadians: Pneumonia. This infection of the lungs has become the talk of the town. But this occurrence...

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Are We At The Beginning Of The End For Triclosan?

(1) Comments | Posted September 12, 2016 | 11:17 AM

If you happen to head into the soap, cosmetics, and dental aisles, you will no doubt find at least a few products highlighting the word, antibacterial. The word itself can bring about feelings of increased safety and improved health. It also may make you believe the product has the same...

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Back To School? More Like Back To Germs

(3) Comments | Posted September 6, 2016 | 9:15 AM

It's September, and Canadians are gearing up for the return to school and regular work schedules. The usual headaches are certain to recur, including increased traffic, greater workloads, homework, and attempts to get up in time to avoid arriving late.

Another annual tradition around this time is an increase...

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Here's How To Reduce Antibiotic Use In Agriculture

(6) Comments | Posted August 29, 2016 | 7:45 AM

It's no secret we are in an antibiotic resistance crisis. Warnings about the looming post-antibiotic era are everywhere and people are being asked to help in whatever way they can. Yet, while we can all work to reduce the amount of antibiotics used in medicine, these achievements represent only a...

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This Is How We Can Use The Internet To Improve Health

(0) Comments | Posted August 22, 2016 | 2:23 PM

The world wide web is filled with health advice. Unfortunately, recommendations may not be all that reliable. That's why many public health professionals look down on this type of consultation.

That being said, this trend has risen over the years and shows no signs of slowing. This...

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What's The Best Way To Deal With West Nile Virus?

(0) Comments | Posted August 15, 2016 | 12:53 PM

There are many welcome hallmarks to summer, such as the longer days and pleasant temperatures. Yet, summer also brings unwanted risks like damaging storms, oppressive heat waves, forest fires, and drought. One of the least favoured recurrences is the rise in mosquito populations and the potential for West Nile Virus...

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Will Smelling Like A Chicken Really Prevent Mosquito Bites?

(0) Comments | Posted August 8, 2016 | 8:49 AM

Almost no one wants to be bitten by a mosquito. The itching is bad enough but a number of infections may come with that unfortunate bite. Infections such as malaria, West Nile Virus, Dengue, and now Zika can turn that annoyance into a potentially life-threatening condition.

While Canadians may...

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It's Official! Gargling With Salt Water Actually Works

(12) Comments | Posted July 29, 2016 | 4:27 PM

When it comes to health, there are two streams of advice. The first is medical in nature, held true by doctors and supported by clinical trials and years, if not decades, of evidence. The other can be best described as the "grandma" approach. There's little to no information on the...

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Antibiotics Are Probably Not An Option To Combat Obesity

(1) Comments | Posted July 25, 2016 | 1:10 PM

No one can deny Canada has an obesity problem. Statistically, a quarter of adults and ten percent of children suffer from this ailment. Yet despite the rising concern, finding effective means to combat the condition has been harder than finding a needle in a haystack.

At first glance,...

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Nanoparticles May One Day Replace Antibiotics

(1) Comments | Posted July 18, 2016 | 11:57 AM

What's the best way to combat a bacterial infection?

For decades, the answer has been relatively straightforward: take an antibiotic. But over the last twenty years, that option has become substantially less effective as a result of antibiotic resistance. The situation is now so widespread even the mention of...

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These Friendly Microbes May Put Popular Allergy Theory To Rest

(4) Comments | Posted July 11, 2016 | 11:52 AM

Over the last decade, many of the mysteries regarding the role of microbes in human health have been solved. No longer are these invisible organisms solely regarded as pathogens. They represent a diverse community of species, most of which are harmless and others actually help us stay healthy. But there...

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On July 9th, Celebrate Health The Nunavummiut Way

(0) Comments | Posted July 4, 2016 | 6:44 AM

Though Canada Day has come and gone, there's still a good reason to keep the good feelings alive. On July 9th, Nunavut will be celebrating its 23rd birthday and the rest of our country is invited to join in the festivities. Not only will it mark a special day for...

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Celebrate Canada Day And Independence Day Safely With Hand Sanitizers

(0) Comments | Posted June 27, 2016 | 10:05 AM

This weekend marks the celebration of two great neighbours. On Friday, Canada will be celebrating its 149th birthday while on Monday our neighbours to the south will be marking the grand old age of 240 years. As one might expect, the two countries will be jam packed with events and...

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Little Doubt This Acne Bacteria Plays A Role In Prostate Cancer

(0) Comments | Posted June 20, 2016 | 11:11 AM

propionibacterium acnes
Propionibacterium acnes, anaerobic gram-positive bacilli responsible for inflammatory acne.

When someone mentions cancer in men, most will immediately think of the prostate. This gland is primarily responsible for male urogenital health. It also may be vulnerable to the onset of tumours, both...

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We Finally Know Why Some Canadians Still Refuse To Vaccinate

(85) Comments | Posted June 13, 2016 | 11:19 AM

Vaccination is one of the most successful means to prevent infections. Yet since it was first used over 200 years ago, the practice continuously has been the subject of controversy.

In Canada, most people know and understand the benefits as well as the risks. However,...

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Meet The Molecule That Can Supercharge Cancer-Killing Viruses

(0) Comments | Posted June 6, 2016 | 10:18 AM

Since the turn of the millennium, the fight against cancer has seen significant progress in all areas of treatment. One of the most promising routes happens to be through a process known as oncolytic virotherapy, or simply OV. The term may be a mouthful but the process at...

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