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Scientists have discovered new lifeforms that live inside the human body in 'colonies'
Featured Image Credit: Getty Stock Images

Scientists have discovered new lifeforms that live inside the human body in 'colonies'

The human body harbors several lifeforms, such as fungi and bacteria, but a recently discovered entity has taken the science world by storm.

The human body is a truly magnificent thing.

As we continue to learn about the world around us more and more through scientific research, sometimes we forget how ever-changing and fascinating the biology of the human race can be.

One such instance is the multitude of unique and unnoticeable lifeforms that exist within our bodies. Common ones, such as bacteria, viruses, and fungi, are well known to the general public, with simple biology classes in school often covering their existence.

However, researchers have learned of a lifeform previously undetected that may live within our bodies as we speak.

A Microscope being used to inspect an organism.

The discovery was made by a team of researchers during a recent Stanford University study that was released in full on in mid-January.

The study reveals that a new genetic material has been discovered and is unlike any others that are found in the human body. In the wake of such a fascinating discovery, the team named the lifeforms 'obelisks' and noted the peculiarities that the entity possesses in their recent study.

While the genetic makeup of such a lifeform is distinguishable from others found within the human body, it has been described as virus-like by some observers.

Nonetheless, a discovery of this nature has resulted in plenty of intrigue throughout the scientific community.

“It’s insane,” said developmental biologist Mark Peifer via “The more we look, the more crazy things we see.”

Computational biologist Simon Roux spoke with a similar fascination when discussing the study.

“I think this [work] is one more clear indication that we are still exploring the frontiers of this viral universe,” Roux noted.

A virus attaching itself to bacteria.

Obelisks were first described in the study as RNA agents that colonize the human gut microbiome, or hGMB for short. However, following its initial discovery in the hGMB, obelisks were later found to be even more prevalent within the human mouth.

The study noted that the lifeform may be found in other parts of the human body, as well.

It is said that obelisks seem to colonize within their host, which is language that is likely to frighten some uninformed readers.

However, the microorganism reportedly lacks certain properties that would make it a conventional virus on its own.

With intrigue regarding virus-like entities and human biology as a whole being noticeably higher in the aftermath of COVID-19, this discovery could take the world by storm if and when its effects on the human bodies it occupies become evident.

Topics: Health, Science