Scientists have discovered the world’s largest bacterium

Scientists have discovered the world's largest bacterium

Scientists have discovered the world’s largest bacterium that can be seen with the naked eye in the mangrove-growing Caribbean swamp, which was published in the journal Science.

The elongated white bacterium (filamentous shape) is the size of a human eyelid, making it the largest bacterium ever known, said Lawrence Berkeley, a marine biologist at the National Laboratory and co – author of the paper that published the findings. Jean-Marie Wallen.

In 2009, Oliver Gross, a co-author and biologist at the University of the French West Indies and Guyana, discovered the first specimen of this bacterium when the leaves of mangrove trees growing on the Guadeloupe archipelago were submerged.

Bacteria longer than 0.9 cm are called theomargarita magnifica or “magnificent sulfur pearl”.

Gross did not immediately realize that the creature that discovered the bacteria was responsible for its astonishing size. Subsequent genetic analysis revealed that the organism was a bacterial cell.

He also found bacteria attached to oyster shells, rocks and glass bottles in the swamp.

Scientists have not yet been able to grow the bacteria in the laboratory, but researchers say its cells have a structure that is unusual for bacteria.

The main difference is its large central compartment or vacuum, which allows it to perform certain cellular functions throughout the cell within that limited space.

Scientists are not sure why the bacterium is so large, but Wallen speculates that it may be an adaptation that allows smaller organisms to avoid eating it.


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