Microbiology: The Study Of Microbes

Nov 15, 2016 By Paul Cobine
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Microbiology is the study of organisms too small to be seen without a microscope. These microbes are all around us all the time and while we cannot see them we benefit from them being there.

These single cells have all the same components that make up our cells but they can live in many very different environments to us.

Microbes can be found at the bottom of the ocean, in the ice frozen in the Antarctica or in a hot spring in Yellowstone National Park where temperatures can be 145 degrees F! They are also found on every part of our bodies some make us sick but mostly they help us. 

Microbes are just single cells with no brain, so how did they get so smart as to live everywhere? It is all about how they use all the resources available, but especially how they recycle and reuse everything even though they only have the same basic structures and proteins found in a human.

In microbiology we try to understand all aspects of a microbe’s life. How do they tell what food is available to eat? How do they tell who else is around? How do we change the microbe to make valuable products? How many different types of microbes exist?

We can answer these questions by growing microbes on different foods and under many different conditions. The information we gain from how they grow can be tested by biochemistry where we test individual parts of the cells for how they work.

The video below shows the microbes that inhabit the human body.