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Biggest Bacteria Ever Found -- May Play Underrated Role In The Environment

Date:
April 16, 1999
Source:
American Association For The Advancement Of Science
Summary:
A group of German, Spanish, and American researchers sampling sediment off the coast of Namibia have stumbled across the biggest bacteria ever known. The largest of these single-celled microbes is visible to the naked eye, about as big as the period at the end of this sentence and nearly 100 times larger than the previous bacterial record-holder. In addition to its giant size, the new microbe is an exotic organism that provides firmer evidence of coupling between two key environmental cycles thought until very recently to be mutually exclusive in the ocean: the sulfur and nitrogen cycles.

Washington DC -- A group of German, Spanish, and American researchers sampling sediment off the coast of Namibia have stumbled across the biggest bacteria ever known. The largest of these single-celled microbes is visible to the naked eye, about as big as the period at the end of this sentence and nearly 100 times larger than the previous bacterial record-holder. In addition to its giant size, the new microbe is an exotic organism that provides firmer evidence of coupling between two key environmental cycles thought until very recently to be mutually exclusive in the ocean: the sulfur and nitrogen cycles. The finding is described in the 16 April 1999 issue of Science.


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The above story is based on materials provided by American Association For The Advancement Of Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


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American Association For The Advancement Of Science. "Biggest Bacteria Ever Found -- May Play Underrated Role In The Environment." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 April 1999. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/04/990416081113.htm>.
American Association For The Advancement Of Science. (1999, April 16). Biggest Bacteria Ever Found -- May Play Underrated Role In The Environment. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/04/990416081113.htm
American Association For The Advancement Of Science. "Biggest Bacteria Ever Found -- May Play Underrated Role In The Environment." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/04/990416081113.htm (accessed April 24, 2014).

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