Related topics: enzyme · cells · protein · amino acids

A new spin on life's origin?

A research team at The University of Tokyo has reproducibly synthesized staircase-like supramolecules of a single handedness, or chirality, using standard laboratory equipment. By gradually removing the solvent from a rotating ...

Did microbes assist life in colonizing land?

All living organisms exist and function only in cooperation with an abundance of symbiotic microorganisms, and have developed together with them over the course of the earth's history. This central finding of modern life ...

Microorganisms on microplastics

Organisms can grow on microplastics in freshwater ecosystems. The findings of a recent study undertaken by researchers from the Leibniz-Institute of Freshwater Ecology and Inland Fisheries (IGB) and the Leibniz Institute ...

Investigating cell stress for better health—and better beer

Human beings are not the only ones who suffer from stress—even microorganisms become stressed out. Now, researchers from Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, have devised a new method to study how single biological ...

Lightning's electromagnetic fields may have protective properties

Lightning was the main electromagnetic presence in the Earth's atmosphere long before the invention of electricity. There are some 2,000 thunderstorms active at any given time, so humans and other organisms have been bathed ...

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Organism

In biology, an organism is any living system (such as animal, plant, fungus, or micro-organism). In at least some form, all organisms are capable of response to stimuli, reproduction, growth and development, and maintenance of homeostasis as a stable whole. An organism may either be unicellular (single-celled) or be composed of, as in humans, many billions of cells grouped into specialized tissues and organs. The term multicellular (many-celled) describes any organism made up of more than one cell.

The terms "organism" (Greek ὀργανισμός - organismos, from Ancient Greek ὄργανον - organon "organ, instrument, tool") first appeared in the English language in 1701 and took on its current definition by 1834 (Oxford English Dictionary).

Scientific classification in biology considers organisms synonymous with life on Earth. Based on cell type, organisms may be divided into the prokaryotic and eukaryotic groups. The prokaryotes represent two separate domains, the Bacteria and Archaea. Eukaryotic organisms, with a membrane-bounded cell nucleus, also contain organelles, namely mitochondria and (in plants) plastids, generally considered to be derived from endosymbiotic bacteria. Fungi, animals and plants are examples of species that are eukaryotes.

More recently a clade, Neomura, has been proposed, which groups together the Archaea and Eukarya. Neomura is thought to have evolved from Bacteria, more specifically from Actinobacteria.

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