Share
Explore BrainMass

Archaea and Bacteria

Archaea and bacteria are generally single-celled organisms which represent two of the three domains of life. Although these two domains are now recognized as independent, this was not always the case. Previously these groups were referred to as Eubacteria and Archaebacteria. It was in the 1970s that archaea were discovered as a completely new group of organisms1.

The term Archaebacteria became inappropriate to use once it was discovered that archaea are actually quite different genetically and in terms of their biochemistry, from bacteria. Although, under the microscope these two types of organisms look to be rather similar.

Archaea are really unique organisms which are capable of living in very extreme environments, such as deep-sea vents, hot springs and very acidic waters. Similar to bacteria, they have been found in the digestive tracts of animals such as cows and marine life. More recently, these organisms have been found to also inhabit less extreme environments, such as in the plankton of the open sea1.

Bacteria represent a large group of prokaryotic organisms that are thought to be one of the earliest life forms. Although bacteria are not always thought of in a positive manner since they have been the cause of many diseases, they do have many applications. For example, some bacteria are capable of producing antibiotics; they can live in symbiosis with other eukaryotic organisms; and are used in the production of dairy products. Some characteristics of bacteria are that they are extremely small in size and can reproduce rapidly. 

Archaea and bacteria are both very unique prokaryotes which are rather different from each other despite what was once believed. Further research in this area of biology is necessary to study both of these organisms and uncover the true lineages of the Archaean domain of life.

 

 

References: 

1. University of Colorado, Boulder. (2014). Introduction to the Archaea. Retrieved from http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/archaea/archaea.html

Title Image Credit: flickr.com

Categories within Archaea and Bacteria

Bacteria Antibiotic Resistance

Postings: 22

Bacteria antibiotic resistance refers to the ability of bacterial pathogens to evolve and be capable of counteracting the effects of one or more antibiotics which they should be susceptible to.

Genetics of Bacteria

Postings: 4

The genetics of bacteria refers to the study of the reproductive capabilities of bacteria and the mechanisms which they utilize to diversify their genetic composition.

E. Coli versus HIV

Present and discuss the differences and similarities in the structure of E. Coli and HIV. Discuss E. Coli and HIV differences in their classification - generally referred to as a natural or phylogenetic classification system. Structural differences can simply be addressed by distinguishing the physical differences between E. Co

Streptococci Organism in the Upper Respiratory Tract

Explain why organisms in the upper respiratory tract might change when the normal flora is replaced with transient flora. Explain why it is important not to touch any other area of the mouth except the pharyngeal membranes when taking a throat culture. One test for the identification of group A streptococci is the latex ag

Phylogenetic Trees

Using the phylogenetic tree in the attached document as a guide, discuss why bacteriophodopsin was likely a late evolutionary invention.

Adaptation of bacteria nad protozoa in hypnotic environment

A. How are bacteria cells adapted to live in a hypnotic environment? B. How are Amoebas protozons adapted to live in a hypnotic environment? C. Imagine that you have done a Gram stain and determined what antibiotic to use to kill the phylum cilophora bacterium. If you expose the bacterium to the antibiotic, how will the