Marlen Espeleta Obando

Medical Art MSc

Follow your gut - Visualising the human gut microbiome


The human body is home to trillions of microorganisms of thousands of different species, with the largest number located in the gastrointestinal tract also known as the gut. Technology is allowing a faster identification of these microbes and with evidence mounting of the health significance of the microbiome, it's more necessary than ever for health professionals and students to acquire comprehensive knowledge about this topic to effectively navigate and contribute to the evolving healthcare landscape. This project was born with the aim of creating an animation to allow health students to visualise the gut microbiome and learn about its composition and functions in the human body. 

Human gastrointestinal tract

On a pink background, there is a white skeleton and the organs the forms the human gastrointestinal tract: esophagus, stomach, small and large intestines

Small intestine villi

This picture takes place inside the small intestine, the walls of the intestine are cover by the villi which are pink finger-like structures.

Functions of the gut microbiome

On a white backgraound, the image shows the following elements: a orange immune cell with the nucleus inside, a colorful tryptophan molecule, a yellow, blue and green pathogenic bacteria, a colorful short chain fatty acid molecule, 2 capsules of medications: one yellow, one red and white and white blue and the last element is an antibody. All these elements represent the functions of the gut microbiota.

Follow your gut - Visualising the human gut microbiome