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ZingPath: Bacteria and Viruses

Benefits of Bacteria

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Bacteria and Viruses

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Benefits of Bacteria


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You will discover new details about the world of microbes, from the diseases they cause to the essential roles they play in ecosystems and industry. Then, work in a top-secret underground biotechnology lab and help develop a new strain of bacteria that can clean up environmental contamination.

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Now You Know

After completing this tutorial, you will be able to complete the following:

  • Give examples of how bacteria are used in the food and beverage industry. 
  • Summarize the role of bacteria in maintaining the health of organisms. 
  • Summarize the role of bacteria in maintaining the health of ecosystems.

Everything You'll Have Covered

Of the bacteria that exist, are more of them harmful or beneficial?

~ More than half of the bacteria that exist are either harmless to humans or actually beneficial.

What are three ways bacteria benefit humans?

~ Bacteria benefit humans by synthesizing vitamins B and K in our bodies, by aiding in the production of food, and by contributing to the production of antibiotics.

How are bacteria useful in ecosystems?

~ Bacteria convert the nitrogen gas in the air into nitrogen compounds that plants can absorb. Bacteria also decompose organic materials into inorganic materials that plants can use.

What would happen if we killed all the microorganisms around us?

~ If we killed all the microorganisms around us, the bacteria that decompose harmful substances into beneficial substances would also be killed and ecosystems would be negatively affected. Nutrient cycles like the nitrogen cycle would no longer function, and all life on Earth would be negatively affected.

Tutorial Details

Approximate Time 2 Minutes
Pre-requisite Concepts Students should be able to define bacteria, beneficial bacteria, and decomposing bacteria.
Course Biology
Type of Tutorial Animation
Key Vocabulary bacteria, beneficial bacteria, decomposing bacteria