(microbiology) single-celled or noncellular spherical or spiral or rod-shaped organisms lacking chlorophyll that reproduce by fission; important as pathogens and for biochemical properties; taxonomy is difficult; often considered to be plants
Plural form of bacterium.
Bacteria constitute a large domain of prokaryotic microorganisms. Typically a few micrometres in length, bacteria have a wide range of shapes, ranging from spheres to rods and spirals. Bacteria were among the first life forms to appear on Earth, and are present in most habitats on the planet, growing in soil, water, acidic hot springs, radioactive waste, and deep in the Earth's crust, as well as in organic matter and the live bodies of plants and animals, providing outstanding examples of mutualism in the digestive tracts of humans, termites and cockroaches. There are typically 40 million bacterial cells in a gram of soil and a million bacterial cells in a millilitre of fresh water; in all, there are approximately 5×10^30 bacteria on Earth, forming a biomass that exceeds that of all plants and animals. Bacteria are vital in recycling nutrients, with many steps in nutrient cycles depending on these organisms, such as the fixation of nitrogen from the atmosphere and putrefaction. In the biological communities surrounding hydrothermal vents and cold seeps, bacteria provide the nutrients needed to sustain life by converting dissolved compounds such as hydrogen sulphide and methane. On 17 March 2013, researchers reported data that suggested bacterial life forms thrive in the Mariana Trench, the deepest spot on the Earth. Other researchers reported related studies that microbes thrive inside rocks up to 1900 feet below the sea floor under 8500 feet of ocean off the coast of the northwestern United States. According to one of the researchers,"You can find microbes everywhere — they're extremely adaptable to conditions, and survive wherever they are."
U.S. National Library of Medicine
One of the three domains of life (the others being Eukarya and ARCHAEA), also called Eubacteria. They are unicellular prokaryotic microorganisms which generally possess rigid cell walls, multiply by cell division, and exhibit three principal forms: round or coccal, rodlike or bacillary, and spiral or spirochetal. Bacteria can be classified by their response to OXYGEN: aerobic, anaerobic, or facultatively anaerobic; by the mode by which they obtain their energy: chemotrophy (via chemical reaction) or PHOTOTROPHY (via light reaction); for chemotrophs by their source of chemical energy: CHEMOLITHOTROPHY (from inorganic compounds) or chemoorganotrophy (from organic compounds); and by their source for CARBON; NITROGEN; etc.; HETEROTROPHY (from organic sources) or AUTOTROPHY (from CARBON DIOXIDE). They can also be classified by whether or not they stain (based on the structure of their CELL WALLS) with CRYSTAL VIOLET dye: gram-negative or gram-positive.
The numerical value of bacteria in Chaldean Numerology is: 1
The numerical value of bacteria in Pythagorean Numerology is: 5
Sample Sentences & Example Usage
The good bacteria don't survive as well.
Your cuticles help seal the nail and keep out bacteria and fungus.
[Palmitic acid] can be confused by the body with bacteria like E.Coli.
We have invented bioconcrete -- that's concrete that heals itself using bacteria.
It’s a flesh-eating bacteria. She had severe wounds on her legs from that bacteria.
Images & Illustrations of bacteria
Translations for bacteria
From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary
- bakteerikanta, bakteeritFinnish
- bakteríur, gerlarIcelandic
- bakteriaKalaallisut, Greenlandic
- បាក់តេរី, វេត្រាណូKhmer
- 박테리아, 세균Korean
- bacteriën, bacterieDutch
- chʼosh doo yitʼíniiNavajo, Navaho
- bakterie, bakterierSwedish
- vi khuẩnVietnamese
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