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Latest Endosymbiont Stories

2009-08-19 15:10:00

Humans might not be walking on Earth today if not for the ancient fusing of two microscopic, single-celled organisms called prokaryotes, NASA-funded research has found. By comparing proteins present in more than 3000 different prokaryotes - a type of single-celled organism without a nucleus - molecular biologist James A. Lake from the University of California at Los Angeles' Center for Astrobiology showed that two major classes of relatively simple microbes fused together more than 2.5...

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2007-04-19 16:39:37

For pea aphids, the ability to go forth and multiply can depend on a single gene, according to new research. An overheated aphid with a mutation in that gene can't reproduce. The gene isn't even in the insect -- it's in tiny symbiotic bacteria housed inside special cells inside the aphid. "It's the first time a mutation in a symbiont has been shown to have a huge impact on host ecology," said Nancy A. Moran, Regents' Professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at The University of Arizona...

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2006-10-12 15:35:00

The smallest collection of genes ever found for a cellular organism comes from tiny symbiotic bacteria that live inside special cells inside a small insect. The bacteria Carsonella ruddii has the fewest genes of any cell. The bacteria's newly sequenced genome, the complete set of DNA for the organism, is only one-third the size of the previously reported "smallest" cellular genome. "It's the smallest genome -- not by a bit but by a long way," said co-author Nancy A. Moran, UA Regents'...

2005-10-13 13:00:00

WASHINGTON -- A one-celled creature found on a sandy beach may be in the process of kidnapping and incorporating an even tinier plant to use as a living energy source, Japanese researchers reported on Thursday. They said the newly discovered organism seems to be in the process of endosymbiosis -- in which one creature incorporates another, creating a new form of life. Scientists believe this is how many modern plants and animals evolved. They believe the chloroplasts, the green solar power...


Latest Endosymbiont Reference Libraries

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2005-09-12 10:12:57

Aphids or greenfly, plant lice (superfamily Aphidoidea) are small plant-feeding insects (1 to 10 mm). Of the 4,000 species of known aphids (distributed in 10 families), around 250 are serious pests for agriculture and forestry as well as an annoyance for gardeners. Natural predators include ladybirds, hoverfly larvae and lacewings. Aphids have two compound eyes and two ocular tubercles made up of 3 lenses, each of which is located behind and above the compound eyes. They have 2 tarsal...

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Word of the Day
siliqua
  • A Roman unit of weight, 1⁄1728 of a pound.
  • A weight of four grains used in weighing gold and precious stones; a carat.
  • In anatomy, a formation suggesting a husk or pod.
  • The lowest unit in the Roman coinage, the twenty-fourth part of a solidus.
  • A coin of base silver of the Gothic and Lombard kings of Italy.
'Siliqua' comes from a Latin word meaning 'a pod.'
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