mi·​cro·​bi·​o·​ta | \ ˌmī-krō-bī-ˈō-tə How to pronounce microbiota (audio) \

Definition of microbiota

: the microscopic organisms of a particular environment : microbiome sense 1 It's very possible that the master key to unlocking chronic disease will turn out to be the health and composition of the microbiota in your gut.— Michael Pollan and Ruth Reichl

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from microbiota

microbiotic \ ˌmī-​krō-​bī-​ˈä-​tik How to pronounce microbiotic (audio) \ adjective
the microbiotic environment of the gut

Examples of microbiota in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web And serotonin is likely just one of a numerous biochemical messengers dictating our mood and behavior that the microbiota impacts. Justin Sonnenburg, Scientific American, "Gut Feelings–the "Second Brain" in Our Gastrointestinal Systems [Excerpt]," 1 May 2015 Why go through all this again, the hideous miracle of the human microbiota? Virginia Heffernan, Wired, "Metaphors Matter in a Time of Pandemic," 19 May 2020 Even a pathogen-free donor’s microbiota can vary from one day to another, depending on factors such as her diet, stress level and menstrual cycle. Monique Brouillette, Scientific American, "Vaginal Fluid Transplants Hold Promise, But Raise Safety Concerns," 16 Oct. 2019 The study, published Monday in Gut, a British Medical Journal publication, analyzed the gut microbiota of 612 study participants between the ages of 65 and 79. Erin Schumaker, ABC News, "Mediterranean diet may offer special health benefits for this age group," 18 Feb. 2020 The scientists first depleted the rodents’ gut microbes with antibiotics, then used fecal pellets to introduce microbiota from either young or old animals. Diana Kwon, Scientific American, "Targeting Gut Microbes May Help Stroke Recovery," 19 Nov. 2019 The alert comes less than a year after the FDA notified the public of the first two deaths conclusively related to the procedure, sometimes known as fecal microbiota transplants or FMTs. Kate Sheridan, STAT, "One dead, four hospitalized after receiving OpenBiome stool transplants," 12 Mar. 2020 Over the course of 12 months, the study participants assigned the Mediterranean diet were less likely to lose diversity in their gut microbiota. Erin Schumaker, ABC News, "Mediterranean diet may offer special health benefits for this age group," 18 Feb. 2020 These bacteria were absent or present at very low levels in the microbiotas of nearly all c-section babies after birth. Ewen Callaway, Scientific American, "C-Section Babies Are Missing Key Microbes," 18 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'microbiota.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of microbiota

1914, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for microbiota

micro- + biota

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about microbiota

Time Traveler for microbiota

Time Traveler

The first known use of microbiota was in 1914

See more words from the same year

Statistics for microbiota

Last Updated

22 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Microbiota.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/microbiota. Accessed 4 Jul. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for microbiota


mi·​cro·​bi·​o·​ta | \ -bī-ˈōt-ə How to pronounce microbiota (audio) \

Medical Definition of microbiota

: the microscopic organisms of a particular environment : microbiome sense 1 The more we learn about our microbiota, however, the more we realize how easy it is for helpful microbes to get caught in the line of fire between an antibiotic and its intended target.— Nathan Wolfe, National Geographic, January 2013 … the microbiota on the tongue differ from those species living in plaque on teeth.— Mel Rosenberg, Scientific American, April 2002

Other Words from microbiota

microbiotic \ -​bī-​ˈät-​ik How to pronounce microbiotic (audio) \ adjective
microbiotic life

Comments on microbiota

What made you want to look up microbiota? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

A More Exception(al) Quiz

  • hot dog  hot dog  hot dog  hot dog cat
  • Which of the following words is not a synonym for ‘a young person’?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!