dust_homes

Wild Life of Our Homes

Rob Dunn Lab | Public Science Projects

Most of our time is spent indoors where we are exposed to a wide array of different microorganisms living on surfaces and in the air of our homes. Despite their ubiquity and abundance, we have a limited understanding of the microbial diversity found within homes and how the composition and diversity of microbial communities change across different locations within the home. Wild Life of Our Homes examines the diversity of bacterial communities found in nine distinct locations within our homes and provides the first comprehensive analysis of the microbial communities found in the home and the factors that shape the structure of these communities both within and between homes.

People

Project Publications

Craine, J.M., Barberán, A., Lynch, R.C., Menninger, H.L., Dunn, R.R., and Fierer, N. (2016). Molecular analysis of environmental plant DNA in house dust across the United States. Aerobiologia 1–16. doi:10.1007/s10453-016-9451-5. View PDF.

Savage AM, Hills J, Driscoll K, Fergus DJ, Grunden AM, Dunn RR. (2016) Microbial diversity of extreme habitats in human homes. PeerJ 4:e2376 https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.2376. View PDF.

Barberán A, Dunn RR, Reich BJ, Pacifici K, Laber EB, Menninger HL, Morton JM, Henley JB, Leff JW, Miller SL, Fierer N (2015) The Ecology of Microscopic Life in Household Dust. Proc. R. Soc. B 282 20151139; DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2015.1139. View PDF.

Barberan A, Ladau J, Leff JW, Pollard KS, Menninger HL, Dunn RR, and Fierer N. (2015) Continental-scale distributions of dust-associated bacteria and fungi. PNAS 112(18): 5756–5761.

Grantham NS, Reich BJ, Pacifici K, Laber EB, Menninger HL, Henley JB Barberán A, Leff JW, Fierer N, and RR Dunn. (2015) Fungi Identify the Geographic Origin of Dust Samples. PLoS ONE 10(4): e0122605. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0122605

Dunn RR, Fierer N, Henley JB, Leff JW, Menninger HL (2013). Home Life: Factors Structuring the Bacterial Diversity Found within and between Homes. PloS ONE 8: e64133.

In the Press

Our Dust, Ourselves

The New Yorker November 4, 2015 – Features the research from the Wild Life of Our Homes project.

A Home’s Story, Told in Dust, Bacteria and Fungi

The New York Times August 27, 2015 – Features the research from the Wild Life of Our Homes project.

House dust can reveal who you live with and what your pet is, study shows

The Guardian August 26, 2015 – Features the research from the Wild Life of Our Homes project.

Household dust can tell gender makeup of your home

CBS News August 27, 2015 – Features the research from the Wild Life of Our Homes project.

Citizen Science Effort Highlights How Little We Know About Invisible Life in Our Own Homes

The Abstract: NC State’s research blog August 26, 2015 – Features the research from the Wild Life of Our Homes project.

What I Learned From Sequencing the Bacteria in My Apartment

WIRED August 25, 2015 – Features the research from the Wild Life of Our Homes project.

Project Creations