Lice and bacteria, partners in parasitism
Scientists have sought to better understand the evolutionary history of bacteria residing within lice. In this study, they see that bacterial evolution is driven by associations with lice, and louse evolution is tied to their mammalian hosts. Ref. Source 1x.
Bacteria have a sense of touch. Although bacteria have no sensory organs in the classical sense, they are still masters in perceiving their environment. A research group has now discovered that bacteria not only respond to chemical signals, but also possess a sense of touch. The researchers demonstrate how bacteria recognize surfaces and respond to this mechanical stimulus within seconds. This mechanism is also used by pathogens to colonize and attack their host cells. Source 7q.
How bacteria survive in oxygen-poor environments. Biologists have revealed a mechanism by which bacterial cells in crowded, oxygen-deprived environments access oxygen for energy production, ensuring survival of the cell. The finding could explain how some bacteria, such as Pseudomonas aeruginosa (P. Aeruginosa), are able to thrive in oxygen-poor environments like biofilms and resist antibiotics. P. Aeruginosa biofilm infections are a leading cause of death for people suffering from cystic fibrosis, a genetic condition that affects the lungs and the digestive system. Source 8p.
Unusual gene evolution in bacteria. Researchers have made another discovery at the cellular level to help understand the basic processes of all life on our planet -- this time within the unusual bacteria that has lived inside cicada insects since dinosaurs roamed Earth. Source 5y.