Q:

True or false: can you see, smell and taste microorganisms?

A:

You cannot see a microorganism without using a microscope. You also cannot taste or smell microorganisms such as bacteria in contaminated food. However, you can smell the odor of bacteria metabolizing sweat. Toenail fungal infections also produce an odor.

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Full Answer

While all the bacteria and archaea are microorganisms, only some fungi and algae are. Some animals, such as rotifers and almost all protozoa, are microscopic. The tiny organisms live in soil, the atmosphere, on the ocean floor and deep inside rocks. Microorganisms aid decomposition in the recycling of nutrients in ecosystems. Airborne microorganisms may influence precipitation and weather. Others are active in the nitrogen cycle.

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    What is anaerobic bacteria?

    A:

    Anaerobic bacteria are microorganisms which can exist in an environment free of oxygen. Some strains can tolerate the presence of oxygen, others use oxygen when it is present in their environment and still others cannot survive in an environment which contains oxygen.

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  • Q:

    How does a microscope work?

    A:

    Microscopes work by gathering light and focusing it through a series of lenses to create an enlarged image. Optical microscopes use a light source to illuminate a specimen and utilize condenser and ocular lenses to provide magnification.

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  • Q:

    What was the first cell that was seen under a microscope?

    A:

    The first cell seen under a microscope was that of a cork, comprised of dead plant cells. In 1665 Robert Hooke was the person to first see these plant cells under a microscope.

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  • Q:

    What are cells with a true nucleus called?

    A:

    Cells with a true nucleus are called eukaryotes. Eukaryotes also have structures called organelles that are bound by membranes; prokaryotes have neither a true nucleus nor organelles. The term "eukaryote" literally means "true nucleus."

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