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

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

(84) 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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The Seesaw Effect Of Bacterial Antibiotic Resistance

(1) Comments | Posted May 30, 2016 | 11:30 AM

A few months ago, the discovery of the antibiotic resistance gene mcr-1 sent shockwaves through the public and the health communities. This piece of bacterial DNA, also known as plasmid-mediated colistin resistance, revealed bacteria had developed a mechanism to tolerate yet another antibiotic. While this milestone marked another...

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Why Dust Mites May Make You Wheeze

(0) Comments | Posted May 23, 2016 | 10:10 AM

It's that time of the year when the air warms up, the humidity rises, and those with allergies suffer. The culprits are numerous but usually involve outdoors allergens. Yet, one particularly problematic pest lives inside the home and is known to cause a variety of respiratory troubles including asthma.


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Microbial Superglue May Lead To Faster, Safer Vaccines

(0) Comments | Posted May 16, 2016 | 1:25 PM

The development of a vaccine is a rather long and complicated process. Also, it isn't always successful. While we may hear of great advancements in the media, such as last year's successful trial of the Ebola vaccine, usually the news comes after decades of work in the laboratory...

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This Probiotic Could Mean Less Antiobiotics For Your Kids

(3) Comments | Posted May 9, 2016 | 10:42 AM

At one time, giving antibiotics to ill children was considered a normal part of life. A parent would bring a child to the physician's office, clinic or emergency room and leave with a prescription in hand, if only "just in case." However, this oft-used way to treat infections...

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Supporting New Zika Therapies Key To Combating Evolving Virus

(1) Comments | Posted May 2, 2016 | 9:18 AM

About five months have passed since the Brazilian government first announced the now well-known Zika outbreak. In that time, the virus has spread across many parts of the Americas and now threatens many areas of the United States.

As the virus spreads, researchers across the globe are...

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This Is What Happens To Your Lungs When You Get The Flu

(0) Comments | Posted April 25, 2016 | 11:23 AM

We haven't heard much about influenza this winter. According to the latest statistics, it has been a relatively quiet year with 4,371 hospitalizations and only 193 deaths.

While these numbers are concerning, they pale compared to last season in which some 8,000 people went to...

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A Cautionary Tale For Tourists Unwittingly Packing Pathogens

(0) Comments | Posted April 18, 2016 | 11:03 AM

The northern region of Canada is a majestic area. This area represents one of the places in the world to visit, if only to take in the incredible sights of Earth's natural beauty. One of the most active sites for tourism is Nunavik, located in Quebec. The combination...

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Planting A Natural Way To Clean Indoor Air

(0) Comments | Posted April 11, 2016 | 11:57 AM

Most Canadians probably do not know the name Hans Selye but his work in this country stands out as one of the most important in our everyday lives. He is better known as the "Father" of stress research. He examined the effect of this common phenomenon...

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Here's Why You Need To Wash Your Fruit And Vegetables

(4) Comments | Posted April 4, 2016 | 10:58 AM

With the warmer temperatures approaching, Canadians will once again look towards fresh fruits and vegetables to supplement their daily diets. But, over the last few years, enjoying raw food has come with the risk for infection. At one time, produce made up only a small portion of outbreak...

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Seaweed May Be The Next Health Superfood

(5) Comments | Posted March 28, 2016 | 10:42 AM

Imagine for a moment a fully sustainable food product with no land, animal, or lab requirements. This may seem impossible yet it does exist in the form of seaweed. Each and every year, up to 5 billion tonnes of these algae are harvested as food yet this number...

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Here's Another Way Friendly Microbes Help Your Health

(0) Comments | Posted March 21, 2016 | 1:38 PM

If you were to take a microscope to your intestines, you would see tens of trillions of microbes moving around doing what they do best: eating and multiplying. Yet, while this may appear to be a utopic environment, what's happening is exactly the opposite. There's a microbial war happening and...

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Introducing A New Probiotic: Bacillus Coagulans

(0) Comments | Posted March 14, 2016 | 10:35 AM

For over a century, a variety of good bacteria has been extoled as a means to improve our general health. Today, these helpful microbes are better known as probiotics. When taken, according to the definition, a person can expect to receive some form of...

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Have Researchers Found A Way To Turn Off Food Cravings?

(0) Comments | Posted March 7, 2016 | 8:16 AM

Canada is dealing with an obesity challenge. At the moment, one in four adults and one in ten children are defined as being obese. One might believe the answer to obesity is simply to eat less and exercise more. Yet, over the last few decades, researchers have learned...

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Probiotics May Help Lower Pesticide Problems

(1) Comments | Posted February 29, 2016 | 10:11 AM

Using bacteria to control environmental troubles has been an ongoing campaign for decades. A variety of environmental species have proven their worth in dealing with oil spills, polychlorinated biphenyls, also known as PCBs, and radioactive waste. The chemicals are broken down, rendering them harmless...

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Don't Believe These Zika Virus Theories

(4) Comments | Posted February 22, 2016 | 9:42 AM

It has now been close to three months since the Brazilian government announced an outbreak of the Zika virus. In that time, Canadians have become witness to a rather new form of epidemiology in which the public learns details almost as soon as public health officials. While this reveals the...

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The Two-Metre Rule Can Help You Avoid The Flu At Work

(2) Comments | Posted February 15, 2016 | 2:19 PM

People sick at work is a common problem. Back in 2013, a survey of individuals found that on average, some 60 to 90 per cent of people who are sick still show up at the office.

This statistic became even more troublesome when people are queried about...

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A 1,000-Year-Old B.C. Remedy May Help Fight Antibiotic Resistance

(1) Comments | Posted February 8, 2016 | 11:56 AM

It's been nearly two years since the World Health Organization called the rise in antibiotic resistance a crisis. Since that time, public health officials have sought new answers to prepare for an uncertain future.

While the idea of making new and stronger antibiotics continues to explored, its...

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