About microscopic forms of life, including Bacteria, Archea, protozoans, algae and fungi. Topics relating to viruses, viroids and prions also belong here.
Microorganisms may be tiny, but the relatively new science of microbiology is huge! Prokaryotic bacteria, eukaryotic fungi, and nonliving viruses are just some of the microbes that effect our health and environment. Some are beneficial, others pathogens or opportunistic.
Microbiology is the study of small living things. Generally this means living things that are too small to see without the use of a microscope. These life forms are called microorganisms or microbes. Microorganisms include bacteria, archaea (a type of prokaryote a bit like bacteria but they have a distinct evolutionary origin), viruses, protozoa (single-cell eukaryotes like amoeba), microscopic fungi and yeasts, and microscopic algae (plant-like organisms). Microorganisms were discovered over three hundred years ago and it is thought that many new microbes have yet to be discovered. Microbiology is a wide area of science that includes bacteriology, virology, mycology, phycology, parasitology, and other branches of biology.
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