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Olivia Birmingham Chapter 27 Objectives

1. Their biomass outweighs all of eurkaryotes times ten. They are huge in number but small in size. They live in some of the most inhospitable areas of the world. Most diseases (plague, TB etc) are caused by bacteria. They are the longest surviving species on the entire planet.


Archae refers to the bacteria from antiquity. Most archae live in extreme environments

like hot springs or hydrothermal vents. The biggest difference is in the structural, biochemical, and physiological characteristics. The bacteria are all other prokaryotes (under the three domain system) and the last domain consists of all eukaryotes


Most prokaryotes are unicellular creatures but some travel in groups of two or more cells.

They have different shapes including rods, spheres and helices. Most prokaryotes are extremely small: having a diameter within the range of 1-5 micrometers. Each prokaryote is designed specifically for the purpose it is to serve.


Prokaryotes have no nucleus but have their DNA information floating around inside.

They have a cell wall, which helps the prokaryote to keep its shape and gives physical protection and prevents the cell from bursting in a hypotonic event. This does not prevent a hypotonic event. Unlike plants, the cell walls of bacteria are made of peptidoglycan, not cellulose. Peptidoglycan is a polymer made of sugars that differs from species to species.


Prokaryotes must compete for resources in most environments anyways. Because of this,

Olivia Birmingham many microorganisms release antibiotics to inhibit the growth of other microorganisms to keep their space. So when we use antibiotics; we are using the bacterias natural defense mechanism to our advantage.


Photoautotrophs are photosynthetic organisms that have light energy to drive the

synthesis of organic compounds from carbon dioxide. Examples would include plants and algae. Chemoautotrophs need only CO2 as a carbon source, but instead of using light as the energy source. These prokaryotes use energy by oxidizing inorganic substances. There are some species can extract energy from rock and are eating away at statues. Photoheterotrophs can use light to generate ATP but must obtain their carbon inorganic forms. The book says it is restricted to certain prokaryotes. Chemoheterotrophs must consume organic molecules for both energy and carbon. This is found widely in prokaryotes, fungi, animals, protests and some parasitic plants. Saprobes are decomposers that absorb their nutrients from dead organic matter like certain fungi. Parasites absorb their nutrients from the bodily fluids of living hosts.