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Microorganisms

           Microbes are the first living creatures that have appeared on the earth. They have flourished on the earth for at least 3.8 Ga (Ga= 109 years) of its 4.5 Ga existence. They formed the first biosphere and continue to carry out a multitude of essential geochemical activities that prepared the Earth for the eventual evolution of macroscopic life. Microorganisms are found everywhere in nature, owing to the existence of extremophiles, and adapted to generally hostile environments. Extremophiles abundant in deep hydrothermal vents, sub seafloor sediments, hypersaline lagoons, methane seeps, deserts, geysers and beneath the surface of rocks. Some of the microbes are known to survive longer duration in vacuum, or to be unusually resistant to radiation. It is estimated that 50% of the living protoplasm on this planet is microbial. Microorganisms are the basis for the all ecosystems processes and often well associated with themselves and higher organisms. Due to their relationship with all plant and animal groups and their abundance (in terms of biomass) in virtually all habitats, man has long exploited this metabolic wealth for food production and preservation, management of pests and pathogens, generating biofuels, monitoring pollutants, cleaning up of oil spills, industrial wastewater treatment and largely used for the development of health care applications (i.e. produce of medicinal compounds).


           Ecologically microbes are most important for the restoration of contaminated environment. The processes of bioremediation is an economical, versatile, environment friendly and efficient treatment strategy, and a rapidly developing technology to degrade and or detoxify chemical substances such as petroleum products, aliphatic and aromatic hydrocarbons, industrial discharges, pesticides and their metabolites and metals. Because of the biodiversity of microbes in nature, they can able to degrade variety of chemical and toxic pollutants. Hence the effects of contamination on environment can be minimized to larger extend. Besides that they are also the key players in the health and sustainability of aquaculture.


Types of Microorganisms

Classification of Microorganisms – Taxonomy

 
 
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