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Research report about Microbes.

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Microscopic Allies

     ¨Unbelievable,"you say with awe looking through your microscope again to make sure youŕe not seeing things.Once again you see tiny unique shapes drifting around on the sample of poison ivy.There´s  bacteria,viruses,fungi,and others you´ve never think were possible.You get an idea - you spit on your microscope.You look again and see new different shapes floating around in it.Some have a nucleus where others don´t.You stand up and put on your coat and hat.Quickly you grab your samples and  rush out the door.What just happened? Your Antonie van leuuvenhoek and you've just

discovered microbes!


Antonie van leeuvenhoek,studying microbes and recording his data.

 Microbes were discovered in1665,by Antonie Van leeuvanhoek.The first three types to be discovered were bacteria,fungus,and protozoa.When microbes were discovered no one believed Antonie about what he had saw,but after days of being doubted,Antonie wrote and published a book on them that changed everyones view on Antonie and his discoveries.He then led many experiments-funded by the Dutch Governement-that led to the discovery that bacteria helps to make wine,cheese,and vinegar.Another experiment showed that bakers yeast was actually made by fungus,and from then microbes were an important part of scientific discoveries,and still are almost 350 years later.



Microbes are classified in two ways-if they have a nucleus,or how many cells each single organisim is made up of.When classifying by amounts if cells they can be unicelluar or multicelluar.(meaning they are made of 1 cell or if they are made of 2 or more.) But if you're classifying by if a microbe has a nucleus,the microbe is either prokaryote or eukaryote.(No nucleus or 1 or more nuclei) As I researched I began to wonder want benefits a nucleus provide.After further research I discovered that cells with no nucleus have more rapid reproduction and mutation.In other words this means they can multiply very easily.Since these kinds can mutate and reproduce they form the largest types of microbes.Most microbes

are eurakaryotes but some are prokaryotes like bacteria.All microbes are either prokaryotes or eukaryotes except one type.Can you guess what it is? Sure enough it's the meanest type of microbes-Viruses!



I'm sure you're probably wondering "What the heck are microbes?". Microbes are micro-organisms-meaning they can't be seen with the naked eye.There is seven types of microbes,they're archea,bacteria,fungi,viruses,algea,protozoa,and helminths.Each has a different structure and way of life.

Introduction to Microbes


A single virus cell cut open to so you can see the structure.

Each virus cell is one humdred times smaller than a single bacterial cell.To add on to this,this made me extremely surprised because a bacteria cell cell is 3 micrometers (one millionth of a meter) and that is one hundred times smaller, This means that one virus cell is 0.03 micrometers which explains why they can infect other microbes. Viruses are so dangerous because of their size and DNA. Each cell is unique just like a human fingerprint; in other words this means there is an infinite amount of new viruses, as long as they keep mutating and reproducing. As I say this I'm realizing that I'm going to pay more attention to keeping clean since there are so many types of viruses.

In humans viruses can cause Chicken Pox, HIV, Influenza, Ebola and the common cold. At first this made me think we could live without them because they only do bad things, but I then realized that without viruses the world would be overpopulated with plants, animals, and humans.

Now I'll be telling you about the scariest type of microbes - Viruses! Viruses are eukaryotes and prokaryotes, because some forms of viruses have a nucleus where others don't. They are the only microbe to have this quality. They're unicelluar organisms (meaning they consist of one cell). There are two types of viruses: Helix and Icosahedral. Viruses are over three billion years old. This surprises me because the earth has only been alive for 4.5 billion years, which means the first virus cell was mutated not too far down earth's timeline. Viruses have only survived this long because they can infect other microbes and any other living things.


How can we stop viruses from getting to us? Viruses can be spread very easily through the passing of cells from  one surface to another. The best way to stop the spread of these viruses is to wash your hands thoroughly and wipe down surfaces with an antibacterial wipe or cleaner. When we sneeze or cough into our hands and then touch another person or surface viruses are mutated in an instant. This then causes more germs to be able to mutate and reproduce which never ends up well.Viruses live on almost every single surface especially in areas like schools,offices,and stores.


How can you keep safe from fungi?Well it really isn't that hard,the key thing is to never ever touch or eat fungi,and after being outside or near fungus-always wash your hands.Fungi spread through mycotoxins as I've told you but like viruses can also spread by touch,a common fungus that is spread by touch is " Athlete's Foot".You can get "Athlete's foot" through exposure to a sock or shoe that has been infected with fungi of some sorts.

 Fungi feed through hyphae ( roots attached to them,that go through the photosynthesis process) or by soaking up nutrients,proteins,and sugar through the host.For example,if you had a toe fungus,the fungus would soak up nutrients and proteins from your toe-causing your toe nail to be brittle.As I was researching I wondered which way of feeding was  more beneficial for the fungi.I researched and found out it's more beneficial for the fungus to feed off its host.Here's why, the host contains and consumes different and better nutrients then the fungus.So it's a better deal to live on a host because the fungi can therefore grow and strengthen easier and quicker.

Another type of microbe I'll be telling you about today is fungus,Fungi are multicelluar organisms,meaning they consist of multiple cells.Fungus are also eukaryotes Some types of fungus are coral,stink-horns,lichens,mushrooms,mildews,and yeast-which is used in baking.

As I'm saying this I'm realizing that without fungus we couldn't have pizza dough,muffins,rolls,or anything that contains yeast for that matter.There is over 1.5 million discovered types of fungus.Personally this scares me because one day if those fungi become overgrown-since there is so many types-could cover whole region with gas and fungus spores.Heres why,Fungus produce mycotoxins(which are natural chemicals that transport fungi cells)that infect roots and animals.The toxins that grow the new fungi spores on that host ,and suck up nutrients.As I discovered more ebaout these toxins,I was curious how powerful they were comapred to other natural toxins.They're classified as a weak toxin compared to other natural toxins like Tetanus (a disease induced by a chemical made by bacteria.) 

Over time more and more fungi cells will build up creating Fungus plants or spores (which are visible to the naked eye).These different formations form the different types of Fungus (stinkhorns,musrooms,coral,lichens,and many more) which all grow in different habitats.It takes about 1-2 weeks for enough fungi cells to build up so it can be seen with the naked eye.

A single virus cell,cut open to show the nucleus and membrane.


Another bacteria cell,showing the cell structure.

Then on the other hand you have harmful bacteria.They attack your body and any other living thing.Now I´m sure you´re probably wondering whats the difference between viruses adn bacteria.Well,

(1) Viruses live throughout their host,where bacteria live in singular cells adn stay in one concentrated spot.(2) Antibiotics kill bacteria cells where antibiotics can´t do much to viruses.Finally the third difference between them is that bacteria can only cause certain infections where viruses can cause thousands of diseases adn infections.Bacteria get into your blood stream,and then use their very unique way of attack to harm you.They will release chemicals that make you fell sick then go for the brain.As I was researching I wondered what chemicals they released,So I did more research.I found out that most chemicals that are released are unknown-because they dissapear so fast.But once these chemicals get into your stomach or brain,its all down hill from there.

Helpful bacteria are ussually found in your food and...You!They help to make milk,yogurt,sauerkraut,buttermilk,and vinegar.I just realized without fungus or bacteria we wouldn't have a lot of foods that we have today.Without them life just wouldn't be the same.There is trillions of bacteria in your body. Bacteria  help to  break down food in your stomach. Baceria also   help to reduce saliva and acid levels,actually without bacteria we would be constantly ẗhrowing up" and our mouths would always be filled with saliva.To add on to this,I now have mixed feelings about bacteria-Are they good or bad? I guess it justs depends on your position,if they"re attacking you or helping you.

What are the most deadly killers of all time?Maybe a Box Jellyfish or a snake of some sorts?Nope not one of these,the answer is ... Bacteria!Bacteria have caused the most deaths over the course of human history over 2.9 billion.Now I'm finally seeing why parents burn it into your brain that taking showers and washing your hands is so important.Without this bacteria would thrive and spread with ease.Each type of bacteria thrive  in different temperatures making them the largest and deadliest group of microbes.There is two groups of bacteria,bacillus and sprilla.Bacteria are unicelluar orgnaisms and also prokaryotes -which is why they're the largest group of microbes.Bacteria can be both harmful and helpful.Over 60% of bacteria are good with about 40% being bad.

(meaning they cause disease and kill people)


There are two types of common helminths,liver flukes and blood flukes.Both of these are common in South America.Once in your body like fungus they soak up nutrients and feed on their host.Once they´re done with their hosts ,they will barrel out causng Lymphatic  Flariscan inflamation ( an inflamation of the skin). In other words,they find the weakest point of the body where they will then dig out through the skin causing a rash and lump on your skin.

 All female helminths lay eggs in their hosts.Those eggs are called "ora".They can lay up to 20,000 eggs a day,this causes them to be very dangerous if they get into your stomach.The eggs are bundled together in a cacoon sort of container,which the ora hatchlings will eat once they hatch.

Thankfully vaccines  have evovled over the years,now they have vaccines to get rid of and protect  animals and humans from these evil worms.Now I see why getting vaccoines is so important,if they didn't create these all humans and animals coulc be infected and killed by helminths and pther types of parasite.(Like Archea and Protozoa)

Helminths are parasitic worms that live in animals and humans.The word is a greek word meaning worm.As I say this I´m realizing that helminths have benn alive for a very long time if the ancient greeks had a name for them.Although they can be seen with the naked eye,they´re

considered microbesbecause of their similar behaviors and structures.They are multicelluar organisms and are eukaryotes.Helminths can be clssified into three      groups,nematrades,trematodes,and cestodes.Helminths tend to infect through food or water-but sometimes attack through direct contact.


A helminth under a microscope.

Microbes in your body

Microbes are crucial to the survival of ecosystems.In fact,if there was no microbes there would be no ecosystems or life at all.Microbes eat dead things (the process of decomposition), which reduces waste,as an effect of this ecosystems can grow and thrive because of more space,which means humans benefit from lusher wildlife that reduces carbon dioxide.Microbes also help in making food for plants.(photosynthesis),which allows plants to stay alive longer.Probably the most important thing that microbes do in ecosystems is recycling oxygen adn nitrogen.without this our world would be over-polluted with gases, and we would eventually die form the toxic fumes.The microbes soak up the nitrogen and carbon dioxide and redistribute it as a friendly gas.This process is like the the process that trees go through.The microbes also process minerals which they hardea dn break down.As the microbes do this new minerals are formed.So without these microbes there is a limited amount of minerals and no life.

As I said before,they're is trillions of microbes in your body,ounumbering blood cells 9 to 1.As I'm saying this I'm realizing how i used to think there was a lot of blood cells,but compared to the amount of microbes its nothing!Most of them being bacteria,live in the stomach where they reduce acid levels.Helpful bacteria help to defend your body from archea and protozoa.(Both are parasites)Microbes in your body also help t send siganls to your brain when you're hungry or full.Doing this really makes me realize how important microbes are to anything that is living.In other words no microbes equals no life.

Microbes in an ecosystem and in your body

(left)A diagram of motile and nonmotile microbes in water.(right)A diagram of good and bad microbes in the gut.

As Robert H Jackson once said " Microbes are doing things we weren't doing ten years ago".Which just proves that viruses,bateria,fungus,helminths and all the other microbes are unique adn important.Sadly as enviorments are destroyed microbes are dying.Their greatest danger isn't natural disasters or nuclear weapons,its humans.Without microbes there is no life which means if large amounts are wiped out humans will cease to exist.So next time you see someone litter,or pollute the air with gasoline fumes from a car,remember you're only hurting yourself.


Eukaryotes-A organism consisting of a cells or cells in which the genteic material is DNA in the form of a nucleus.


Prokaryotes-A organism consisting of a cell or cells in which their is no nucleus.


 Multicelluar-An organism consisting of many cells


Unicelluar-An organism consisting of one cell


Nuclei-The plural form of nucleus


Host-An organism harboring a parisitic mutual,or a commensal symbiont,typicallly providing nourishment and shelter


Photosynthesis-The process by which green plants and some other organisms use sunlight to synethesize foods from carbon dioxide and water.


Membrane-A pliable sheetlike structure acting as a boundary,lining,or partition in an organism


Ecosystem-A biological community of living organisms,and their physical enviorment


Vaccine-A substance used to stimulate the production of antibodies and provide immunity againts one or several diseases.


Mutate-A cause  or change to change in form or nature


HIV-A chronic life threatening disease condition caused by the human immunodeficency Virus


Chicken Pox-An infectiuos disease causing high fevers and a rash of itchy inflamed blisters