Today’s Solutions: June 18, 2024

To the surprise of the science world, a new bacterium has been discovered that is bigger than a fruit fly! The humongous organism is the largest bacterium ever recorded, coming in at 0.78 inches (2 centimeters) long. Resembling a long skinny string, the team appropriately named the creature Thiomargarita ​​magnifica, which translates literally to “giant bacteria.” Unlike most bacteria, the Thimargarita magnifica can be seen with the naked eye. 

“All too often, bacteria are thought of as small, simple, ‘unevolved’ life-forms — so-called ‘bags of proteins,'” said microbiologist Chris Greening to Science. “But this bacterium shows this couldn’t be much further from the truth.”

Unlike most bacteria, whose genetic material floats around freely inside their cells, this newly discovered organism carries its DNA inside a membrane. This characteristic sets the T. magnifica into a new category of single-celled organisms: somewhere in between a prokaryote and a eukaryote. 

Interestingly, the stringy bacterium also carries a water pouch that occupies more than 70 percent of its volume. The paper, published in bioRxiv, discusses how this feature means its contents are advantageously pushed to the outer layer, allowing easy diffusion of molecules into the cell and toxins out. 

Scientists are excited at what this special organism may uncover. Kazuhiro Takemoto, a computational biologist added that this giant bacterium “could be a missing link in the evolution of complex cells.”

Source study: bioRxivA centimeter-long bacterium with DNA compartmentalized in membrane-bound organelles

Solutions News Source Print this article
More of Today's Solutions

Cancer therapy breakthrough: X-rays expose and exterminate brain tumor cells ...

A revolutionary study from Nanyang Technological University in Singapore (NTU Singapore) developed a novel way to selectively target and destroy brain tumor cells using ...

Read More

Beer spas are a frothy new wellness trend taking over the USA

Would you immerse yourself in a tub of beer to improve your health and well-being? This unique European ritual has captured Americans, resulting in ...

Read More

The scientific power of live music

We’re all familiar with the sense of wonder and joy we experience when we hear a song or piece of music we love, but ...

Read More

This sustainable solar panel can go on buildings or your clothes

When you see the new sunlight-absorbing material developed by Carvey Ehren Maigue, an engineering student from the Philippines, the colors might remind you of ...

Read More