Amoeba

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Amoeba

 

An amoeba (/əˈmiːbə/; rarely spelt amœba; plural am(o)ebas or am(o)ebae /əˈmiːbi/),[1] often called an amoeboid, is a type of cell or unicellular organism which has the ability to alter its shape, primarily by extending and retracting pseudopods.[2] Amoebae do not form a single taxonomic group; instead, they are found in every major lineage of eukaryotic organisms. Amoeboid cells occur not only among the protozoa, but also in fungi, algae, and animals.[3][4][5][6][7]

Microbiologists often use the terms "amoeboid" and "amoeba" interchangeably for any organism that exhibits amoeboid movement.

In older classification systems, most amoebae were placed in the class or subphylum Sarcodina, a grouping of single-celled organisms that possess pseudopods or move by protoplasmic flow. However, molecular phylogenetic studies have shown that Sarcodina is not a monophyletic group whose members share common descent. Consequently, amoeboid organisms are no longer classified together in one group.[10]

The best known amoeboid protists are the "giant amoebae" Chaos carolinense and Amoeba proteus, both of which have been widely cultivated and studied in classrooms and laboratories.[11][12] Other well known species include the so-called "brain-eating amoeba" Naegleria fowleri, the intestinal parasite Entamoeba histolytica, which causes amoebic dysentery, and the multicellular "social amoeba" or slime mould Dictyostelium discoideum.

Applied Microbiology: Open Access is a scholarly open access journal that deals with the study of Medical microbiology the study of the pathogenic microbes and the role of microbes in human illness, Pharmaceutical microbiology the study of microorganisms that are related to the production of antibiotics, enzymes, vitamins and vaccines, Industrial microbiology the exploitation of microbes for use in industrial processes

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