November 28, 2022


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How do bacteria really move?  Scientists have solved a 50-year-old mystery

How do bacteria really move? Scientists have solved a 50-year-old mystery

This issue was examined by an international research team led by Dr. Edward H. Eagleman of the University of Virginia School of Medicine. The researchers used a freezing microscope and computer modeling to find out what no conventional microscope had ever seen. Notice… The unusual structure of cilia at the level of individual atoms.

Different bacteria have different types of cilia. They are made up of thousands of identical subunits, but from a physical point of view, such a system should generate straight or somewhat elastic cilia. This would prevent the bacteria from moving because such shapes cannot “generate thrust”. To move the bacteria, you need a “fan” like a switch. after finishing 50 years of analysis, scientists finally know how bacteria do it.

Investigators noticed that The protein that makes up cilia can be found in 11 different states. The shape of the cilia is formed due to the exact combination of these conditions. They are also tested in this regard antique They are single-celled organisms that live in harsh environments. The research team found that cilia are also found in ten different states. This suggests that nature finds similar solutions through very different paths of evolution. Bacteria and archaea have evolved this trait independently of each other.

As with birds, bats, and bees, all of which independently developed wings for flight, the evolution of bacteria and archaea converged toward a solution similar to swimming. since then biological structures It appeared on Earth billions of years ago, Eagleman said, and the 50 years it took to understand it might not seem that long.

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