Metopus protozoan

Metopus protozoan

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This image is part of the feature Protozoa Power

Credit: VOLKER STEGER/CHRISTIAN BARDELE/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Metopus protozoan. Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of a Metopus sp. protozoan (single-celled animal). It is a ciliate protozoan, having numerous fine hairs (cilia) on its body. It lives in mud with a low oxygen content and uses symbiotic bacteria to produce the oxygen it needs for respiration. Protozoa such as this are being used in biotechnology research at Axiva (part of Aventis) in Frankfurt, Germany. They are being studied to see if they can be used to make useful biologically active chemicals such as enzymes, polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) and antibiotics. Magnification unknown.

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Keywords: animal, antibiotics, aventis, axiva, biochemistry, biotechnology, ciliate, enzymes, invertebrate, invertebrates, metopus, nature, polyunsaturated fatty acids, protist, protozoa, protozoan, research organism, scanning electron micrograph, sem, single-celled, wildlife, zoology

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