Scientists and the world, in general, got used to the fact that you can see bacteria only by using a powerful telescope. But nature seems to always be getting updates, or scientists have missed something along the way.
It happens once again, as CNN brings us the news that the largest bacterium ever found has recently been discovered in Guadeloupe in the Lesser Antilles islands.
Thiomargarita magnifica enters the stage
Thiomargarita magnifica is the bacterium in question, and it measures almost a centimeter in length, while it can even grow up to 2 centimeters. These sizes mean that the bacterium is huge by comparison with other such types of organisms.
Jean-Marie Volland, a coauthor of the study and who works at the Laboratory for Research in Complex Systems in California, gives us a good idea of how big the newly-discovered bacterium is, as she said being quoted by CNN:
To understand how gigantic that is for a bacterium, it is the same as if we were to find a human as tall as Mount Everest.
Otherwise said, the newfound bacteria is about 5,000 times bigger than most of the other bacteria present in the world today. We’re talking about a single bacteria cell.
Volland also explained, as CNN also quotes:
This was a very interesting discovery that opens a lot of new questions because it is not something that is classically observed in bacteria. It is actually a characteristic of more complex cells, the type of cells that constitute our bodies or animals and plants,
We want to understand what are those pepins and what exactly they do, and if they play a role in the evolution of gigantism for these bacteria, for instance.
The new study has been published in the journal Science.