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Bacteria’s Role in the World. Pgs. 29 - 32. Good for the Environment. Some bacteria can cause disease, but many are helpful to us. Nitrogen-fixing bacteria consume nitrogen in the air and change it into a form that plants can use.

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Good for the environment
Good for the Environment

  • Some bacteria can cause disease, but many are helpful to us.

  • Nitrogen-fixing bacteria consume nitrogen in the air and change it into a form that plants can use.

  • Decomposing bacteria make nutrients available again to living things that can use them.


Clean up bacteria
Clean up Bacteria

  • Some bacteria have been used to combat pollution.

  • Bioremediation is the use of bacteria and other microorganisms to change pollutants into harmless chemicals.

  • This is used in industrial, agricultural and municipal wastes as well as oil spills.


Bacteria good for people
Bacteria Good for People

  • People have been able to genetically engineer bacteria since 1973.

  • Researchers inserted genes from a frog into Escherichia coli and the bacteria reproduced frog genes.

  • Scientists can engineer bacteria for medicines, insecticides, cleansers, adhesives, foods and many other products.


Uses for bacteria
Uses for Bacteria

  • Some bacteria are used to make antibiotics that kill bacteria.

  • Some make insulin, which is a substance needed by the body to properly use sugars and carbohydrates.

  • Cheese, yogurt, buttermilk, and sour cream are all made with bacteria.

  • Lactic-acid bacteria make lactic acid to use as a preservative for foods.


Harmful bacteria
Harmful Bacteria

  • Pathogenic bacteria cause diseases by invading a host organism and obtain nutrients from the host’s cells.

  • These bacteria can be cured with antibiotics.

  • Some types of diseases from bacteria are: cavities, ulcers, strep throat, food poisoning, bacterial pneumonia, Lyme disease, Tuberculosis Leprosy, Typhoid fever, bubonic plague


Diseases for more than people
Diseases for more than people

  • Pathogenic bacteria attack plants, animals, protists, fungi and other bacteria.

  • They can cause damage to fruit, grain, and vegetable crops.


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