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Characterizing and Classifying Prokaryotes

Name and describe typical prokaryotic morphologies

True or False
All Prokaryotic cells reproduce sexually

All Prokaryotic cells reproduce asexually

Three main methods of Prokayotic cell reproduction

Binary fission (most common)
Snapping division

Describe binary fission

How does budding differ from binary

In binary fission, the parent cell disappears with the formation of two equal-sized offspring; in contrast, a bud is often much smaller than its parent, and the parent remains to produce more buds.

Describe steps of budding

1. DNA is replicated
2. One daughter DNA molecule is moved into bud
3. Young bud leads to
4. Daughter cell

The arrangement of Prokaryotic cells result from what two aspects of division during binary fission?

Planes in which cells divide
Separation of daughter cells

Produced by Gram-positive Bacillus and Clostridium


Defensive strategy against unfavorable conditions


What is the basis of Modern Prokaryotic Classification?

genetic relatedness of rRNA sequences

Three domains of Modern Prokaryotic Classification?


Give three common features of Archaea

1. Lack true peptidoglycan
2. Cell membrane lipids have branched hydrocarbon chains
3. AUG codon codes for methionine

Give three methods of reproduction for Archaea

binary fission

True or False
Archaea are known to cause disease

Archaea are NOT known to cause disease
(not relevant to the human health)

require temperatures over 80ºC


Depend on greater than 9% NaCl to maintain integrity of cell walls

Halophiles (salt)

Largest group of archaea


One of primary sources of environmental methane

Methanogens living colons of animals

Convert carbon dioxide, hydrogen gas, and organic acids to methane gas


Extremophiles & Methanogens belong to which domain?


believed to be similar to earliest bacteria Autotrophic

Deeply branching bacteria

contain photosynthetic lamellae which allows them to absorb light for anabolism

Phototrophic bacteria

Rod-shaped, obligate anaerobes
Important in medicine (toxins) and industry (forms endospores)


Facultative or obligate anaerobes
Lack cell walls
Associated with pneumonia and urinary tract infections


many common in soil


contaminates milk and meat products


grows in the body but rarely causes disease


cause numerous diseases

Streptococcus and Enterococcus

one of the most common inhabitants of humans


Pleomorphic (different shaped) aerobes and facultative anaerobes. Produces metachromatic granules which store phosphate
Examle C. diphtheriae


Aerobic rods that sometimes form filaments. Slow growth partly due to mycolic acid in its cell walls
Example M. tuberculosis and M. Leprae


Form branching filaments resembling fungi. Important genera include Actinomyces, Nocardia, Streptomyces


thrive in environments with low nutrients
Pathogenic: gonorrhea, meningitis, PID, whooping cough


Some reduce sulfer
Others infect other gram- bacteria


Cause blood poisoning and ulcers


Cause fetal blindness, pneumonia and STDs


Cause syphilis and Lyme disease


Can cause abdominal, pelvic and blood infections


The type of reproduction in prokaryotes that results in a palisade arrangement of cells is called
a. pleomorphic division.
b. endospore formation.
c. snapping division.
d. binary fission.

c. snapping division.

The thick-walled reproductive spores produced in the middle of cyanobacterial filaments are called
a. akinetes.
b. terminal endospores.
c. metachromatic granules.
d. heterocysts.

a. akinetes.

Which of the following terms best describes stiff, spiral-shaped prokaryotic cells?
a. cocci
b. bacilli
c. spirilla
d. spirochetes

c. spirilla

a. can remain alive for decades.
b. can remain alive in boiling water.
c. live in a state of suspended animation.
d. all of the above

d. all of the above

Halobacterium salinarium is distinctive because
a. it is absolutely dependent on high salt concentrations to maintain its cell wall.
b. it is found in terrestrial volcanic habitats.
c. it photosynthesizes without chlorophyll.
d. it can survive 5 million rad of radiation.

a. it is absolutely dependent on high salt concentrations to
maintain its cell wall.

Photosynthetic bacteria that also fix nitrogen are
a. mycoplasmas.
b. spirilla.
c. bacteroids.
d. cyanobacteria.

a. mycoplasmas.

Which genus is the most common anaerobic human pathogen?
a. Bacteroides
b. Spirochetes
c. Chlamydia
d. Methanopyrus

a. Bacteroides

Flexible spiral-shaped prokaryotes are
a. spirilla.
b. spirochetes.
c. vibrios.
d. rickettsias.

b. spirochetes.

Bacteria that convert nitrogen gas into ammonia are
a. nitrifying bacteria.
b. nitrogenous.
c. nitrogen fixers.
d. nitrification bacteria.

c. nitrogen fixers.

The presence of mycolic acid in the cell wall characterizes
a. Corynebacterium.
b. Listeria.
c. Nocardia.
d. Mycobacterium.

d. Mycobacterium.

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