CARIBBEAN.- Scientists have discovered the world’s largest bacteria in a Caribbean mangrove. Although most bacteria are microscopic in size, This one is so big that it can be seen with the naked eye.
Jean-Marie Vollandmarine biologist Lawrence National Laboratorysaid a thin white filamentabout the size of a human eyelash, it is the “largest known bacterium to date”.
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In accordance with CBSNews, Oliver Grossbiologist at University of the French West Indies and Guianafound in the first specimen of this bacterium, called Thiomargarita magnificaor “magnificent sulfur pearl,” attached to sunken mangrove leaves in the Guadalupe archipelago in 2009.
However, at that time he did not know that it was a bacterium due to its surprising size. Only further genetic analysis can reveal that the organism was a single bacterial cell.
It has an unusual structure for bacteria
“This is an amazing discovery,” said Petra Levin, a microbiologist at the University of Washington, who was not involved in the study. “It opens up the question of how many of these giant bacteria exist, and reminds us to never underestimate bacteria.”
Scientists have not yet been able to grow it in the laboratory; researchers say heThe cell has a structure that is unusual for bacteria.
They also noted that they are not sure why the bacteria is so large, but Volland hypothesized that it might be an adaptation to prevent smaller organisms from eating it.