Microbial Development

James F Rice jrice at utkvx.utk.edu
Mon Jan 24 21:29:00 EST 1994

	I am very interested in observing what everyone thinks of when they
consider microbial development.  What type of definition would be suitable for
this term?  What is the scope of the phase?  This interest is partly a result
of my own research and partly because of an advanced Microbiology course in
which I am enrolled. In this course we are going to attempt to address the
issue of Bacterial Development in regard to the physiology of microbes.  Some
examples of the types of systems we will be studing include Cyanobacteria,
Myxobacteria, Bacterial Multicellularity, and Caulobacter development.  For
instance certain cyanobacteria undergo a developmental process which leads to a
development of specialized areas of the cell.  These specialized areas include
a vegatative cell filament, an akinete, and a heterocyst.  Another example
includes the Caulobacter species.  This bacterium has a specialized stalk which
allows one cell to adhere to a solid support; while this cell adheres to the
surface a daughter cell buds off having a flagella, but no stalk.  Over time
this daughter cell may develop a stalk and anchor itself to a surface, and so
forth.  These processes are often very complex.  Other examples include
bacteria which develop a top and bottom such as S. sela (sp).  I would like to
hear what type of definition, based on the type of systems I have discribed,
could adaquately discribe Microbial Development. 

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