What is a Microorganism (Microbe)?
Microorganism (Microbe) Definition
What are microorganisms or microbes?
Microorganisms, also called microbes, are small, usually single-celled organisms invisible to the human eye. They can be found practically everywhere, from the highest mountains to the deepest oceans, from the icy polar areas to the scalding hot geothermal springs.
Numerous types of life are classified as microbes, including bacteria, viruses, fungi, algae, and protozoa. They participate in vital processes, including nitrogen cycling and decomposition, and play important roles in a variety of ecosystems and domains of life. They can greatly affect business, agriculture, and health in human situations.
- Single-celled creatures known as bacteria can live in various settings, such as soil, water, and the human body.
- Even smaller than bacteria, viruses require a host cell to multiply to survive. In doing so, they frequently spread disease.
- Fungi are crucial in decomposition and nutrient cycling and can be found as bigger, multicellular organisms like molds and mushrooms or as single-celled yeasts.
- Algae are organisms that resemble plants and are capable of photosynthesis, a process that turns sunlight into energy and is essential to the functioning of many ecosystems.
- Protozoa are single-celled, animal-like organisms that can be parasitic and found in water and other moist settings.
Both good and bad microbes can affect people. In the human stomach, some bacteria support digestion and create vitamins, while others can lead to illnesses. Similarly, fungi can be used to produce food (for instance, yeast is used to make bread), but they can also lead to diseases. Understanding bacteria is essential for several disciplines, including environmental science, agriculture, and the study of disease progression and biogeochemical cycling.