10th August 2009 – A Bacterial Conundrum

A Bacterial Conundrum: where to go and how to get there?

Professor Judith Armitage of Oxford University took us into the land of the bacterium. These little creatures are less than a thousandth of a millimetre in size – so the full stop at the end of this sentence could hold several hundred thousand.

They still face the same problems as other animals – how to find food, how to avoid danger and if you know where the food is how do you go in that direction? This is not so easy when you are too small to have a brain, so how do they do it? They are the most successful creatures on earth and the ones from whom all other animals and plants are descended – so they must be good at it.

The session also included work on Swine flu and how bacteria differ from viruses (or is it “viri”?)

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