By Stein D.
During this engrossing biography, Dorothy Stein strips away the numerous layers of delusion to bare a narrative way more dramatic and engaging than earlier money owed have indicated
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Additional resources for Ada, a life and a legacy
They provide animals like us with Adenosine-5'-triphosphate (ATP) – our energy source. 5 billion years ago, hyperthermophilic archaea and alpha proteobacteria joined symbiotically to form a new type of cell that was very good at acquiring energy and respiring with oxygen (more on this in Chapter 3). Because of our human cells’ symbioses with once free-living mitochondrial bacteria, we are able to survive the ravages of the poisonous gas oxygen (of course, mitochondria are also responsible for programmed cell death, so this particular symbiosis comes with an immutable and catastrophic caveat for animals).
Many bacteria do not move of their own volition – although all expand their cells through morphogenetic (reproductive) movement – but rather are moved by air or water currents. Bacteria may also glide (by using a kind of slime substance) or swim using ﬂagella. Flagella are whips or tails attached to the bacterial cell in which there is a rotating wheel that turns by internal electricity (a ﬂow of hydrogen ions). The third and fourth organizing features are reproduction and sex (genetic recombination), and this is the subject of Chapter 5.
Putting this in larger evolutionary perspective, Carl Woese et al. 17 Notwithstanding recent advertisements about ‘good’ bacteria in yoghurt, I am schooled in recognizing my meetings with bacteria as military encounters – invasion and defense – between my (nonbacterial) individual self and disease (bacteria). That is, the pathogen matrix overwhelmingly deﬁnes the parameters of animal meetings-with bacteria. Thus my not-species meeting-with must begin by exploring bacteria excessive to pathogen characterization.