Phylogenetic diversity of Bacteria - Chlamydiae

7 important questions on Phylogenetic diversity of Bacteria - Chlamydiae

What is a distinctive feature of Chlamydiae and Planctomycetes, and how are they related to each other?

Chlamydiae and Planctomycetes lack the key cell division protein FtsZ. They share an ancestor and are more closely related to each other than to other bacterial phyla.

Describe the characteristics of Chlamydiae, focusing on their habitat, size, and genomic features.

Chlamydiae are obligate intracellular parasites found in various habitats, including soils and aquatic systems. They are small cocci (approximately 0.5 mm in diameter) with highly reduced genomes (about 1 Mbp), making them biochemically limited.

Explain the significance of the absence of the FtsZ protein in Chlamydiae and Planctomycetes.

FtsZ is crucial for septum formation during cell division in most bacteria. Chlamydiae and Planctomycetes lack this protein, raising interest in understanding alternative mechanisms for cell division.
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Discuss the unique characteristics of Chlamydiae's cell wall and its susceptibility to beta-lactam antibiotics.

Many chlamydial species lack a cell wall, minimizing the use of peptidoglycan to evade the host immune system. Despite this, they remain susceptible to beta-lactam antibiotics, as they require a ringlike peptidoglycan structure for septum formation during cell division.

Name some notable genera of Chlamydiae and mention their specific hosts.

Notable genera include Chlamydia, Chlamydophila, and Parachlamydia. Parachlamydia acanthamoebae infects free-living amoebae, particularly those in the genus Acanthamoeba.

Provide examples of human pathogens within the genera Chlamydia and Chlamydophila, and describe the diseases they cause.

Chlamydophila psittaci causes psittacosis, Chlamydia trachomatis is responsible for trachoma and various human diseases, and Chlamydophila pneumoniae causes respiratory syndromes. Psittacosis is transmitted from birds to humans, trachoma causes eye-related issues, and chlamydial infections are sexually transmitted.

Discuss the evolutionary survival strategy of Chlamydiae and their adaptations for efficient transmission and survival.

    • Chlamydiae have evolved an efficient survival strategy, including parasitizing host resources, producing resistant cell forms (elementary bodies) for transmission, and utilizing a distinctive chlamydial life cycle.

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