In 1995, an editorial in Science (267:1575) commented that predictions made some 25 years previously regarding "Biology and the Future of Man" were largely fulfilled but that "the most revolutionary and unexpected findings were not predicted." We would be glad to do as well! As we stated at the beginning, our work as editors of the Escherichia coli and Salmonella book did not endow us with special powers of prophecy but it does permit us to express our excitement for the future. In our opinion, E. coli and S. enterica will continue to play a central role in biological research. This is not because they are intrinsically more interesting than any other bacteria, as we believe that all bacteria are equally interesting. However, knowledge builds on knowledge, and it is here that these two species continue to have a large edge not only over other microorganisms but also, for some time to come, over all other forms of life. It is interesting in this connection that biotechnology, having made detours through other microorganisms, always seems to return to E. coli.
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