I just read an article, “Why You Shouldn’t Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is,” which reported on the first across-the-board analysis of the DNA on dollar bills. Researchers from New York University’s, Dirty Money Project identified 3,000 types of bacteria on them – many times more than were found in previous microscope-based studies.
Here are some examples of what scientists in this most recent NYU study found, and keep in mind that they “could identify only about 20 percent of the non-human DNA they found because so many microorganisms haven’t yet been cataloged in genetic data banks.”
Eighty $1 bills randomly obtained from a bank in New York yielded about 1.2 billion DNA pieces.
The Journal reported: “About half of it was human. The researchers found bacteria, viruses, fungi and plant pathogens. They saw extremely minute traces of anthrax and diphtheria. They identified DNA from horses and dogs – even a snippet or two of white rhino DNA.” The most abundant species they found is one that causes acne. Others were linked to gastric ulcers, pneumonia, food poisoning and staph infections and some carried genes responsible for antibiotic resistance. Cocaine is currency’s “most common contaminate” in the U.S., based upon a 2009 University of Massachusetts Dartmouth study.
What a bacteria fiesta…
And we thought bathrooms and ATM machines were bad enough! Just make sure to wash your hands frequently and hey, you might want to stop biting your nails. Oh, and use sanitizer as a last resort. This actually breaks down your immunity abilities.