A Cyanobacterium Capable of Swimming Motility

Science  04 Oct 1985:
Vol. 230, Issue 4721, pp. 74-76
DOI: 10.1126/science.230.4721.74


A novel cyanobacterium capable of swimming motility was isolated in pure culture from several locations in the Atlantic Ocean. It is a small unicellular form, assignable to the genus Synechococcus, that is capable of swimming through liquids at speeds of 25 micrometers per second. Light microscopy revealed that the motile cells display many features characteristic of bacterial flagellar motility. However, electron microscopy failed to reveal flagella and shearing did not arrest motility, indicating that the cyanobacterium may be propelled by a novel mechanism.

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