Colony (biology)


Colony (biology)

In biology, a colony reference to several individual organisms of the same species living closely together, usually for mutual benefit, such as stronger defense or the ability to attack bigger prey. Some insects (ants and honey bees, for example) live only in colonies. The Portuguese Man o' War is an example of a colony of four different polyp forms.

An electronic bacterial colony counter.

A colony of single-celled organisms is known as a colonial organism. Colonial organisms were probably the first step towards multicellular organisms via natural selection.[citation needed] The difference between a multicellular organism and a colonial organism is that individual organisms from a colony can, if separated, survive on their own, while cells from a multicellular lifeform (e.g., cells from a brain) cannot. Volvox (technically a coenebium) is an example for the border between these two states.

A bacterial colony is defined as a visible cluster of bacteria growing on the surface of or within a solid medium, theoretically cultured from a single cell.[1] Because all organisms within the colony descend from a single ancestor, they are genetically identical (except for mutations which occur at a low, unavoidable frequency, as well as the more likely possibility of contamination). Obtaining such genetically identical organisms (or pure strains) can be useful in many cases; this is done by spreading bacteria on a culture plate and starting a new stock of bacteria from a single colony. A biofilm is a colony of microorganisms often comprising several species, with properties and capabilities greater than the aggregate of capabilities of the individual organisms.

See also

References

  1. ^ Tortora, Gerard J.; Berdell R., Funke; Christine L., Case (2009). Microbiology, An Introduction. Berlin: Benjamin Cummings. pp. 170–171. ISBN 0-321-58420-1. 



Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Colony (disambiguation) — Contents 1 Society 1.1 Animals, insects, micro organisms, plants 2 Places …   Wikipedia

  • Colony stimulating factor 1 receptor — Rendering based on PDB 2I0V …   Wikipedia

  • Colony Collapse Disorder — (or CCD) is a phenomenon in which worker bees from a beehive or Western honey bee colony abruptly disappear. While such disappearances have occurred throughout the history of apiculture, the term Colony Collapse Disorder was first applied to a… …   Wikipedia

  • Colony-stimulating factor — Colony stimulating factors (CSFs) are secreted glycoproteins that bind to receptor proteins on the surfaces of hemopoietic stem cells, thereby activating intracellular signaling pathways that can cause the cells to proliferate and differentiate… …   Wikipedia

  • Colony collapse disorder — Honey bees entering a beehive Colony collapse disorder (CCD) is a phenomenon in which worker bees from a beehive or European honey bee colony abruptly disappear. While such disappearances have occurred throughout the history of apiculture, the… …   Wikipedia

  • biology — /buy ol euh jee/, n. 1. the science of life or living matter in all its forms and phenomena, esp. with reference to origin, growth, reproduction, structure, and behavior. 2. the living organisms of a region: the biology of Pennsylvania. 3. the… …   Universalium

  • Colony Collapse Disorder — Eine Hauptursache des Bienensterbens in Deutschland ist der Befall mit Varroamilben (hier auf dem Körper einer Honigbiene) Als Colony Collapse Disorder (engl.; kurz CCD) bzw. Völkerkollaps bezeichnet man ein in den 2000er Jahren in Nordamerika… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • colony — noun (plural colonies) 1》 a country or area under the political control of another country and occupied by settlers from that country.     ↘(the colonies) all the foreign places formerly under British political control.     ↘(the colonies) the… …   English new terms dictionary

  • Colonisation (biology) — For the same species living closely together, see Colony (biology). Colonisation is the process in biology by which a species spreads into new areas, regions, and continents. It is sometimes also referred to as immigration, but colonisation often …   Wikipedia

  • Macrophage colony-stimulating factor — Colony stimulating factor 1 (macrophage) PDB rendering based on 1hmc …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.