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Known Molecular Features that differentiate Archaea

Page history last edited by SKotelnikova 9 years, 7 months ago


Table showing Molecular Features that differentiate Archaea from Bacteria and Eukarya:



Archaea Bacteria Eukarya

Presence of Plasmids and introns 

Contain Plasmids and introns

Contain Plasmids but not introns 

Generally do not contain plasmids but contain introns

Ribosome Size 

70S, more closely resemble eukarya ribosomes in structure and function



Differences in sequences of nucleotides in cells rRNA

Unique with distinct molecular regions

Unique with distinct molecular regions

Unique with distinct molecular regions

RNA Polymeras Properties 

 Usually contains 8 to 11 different proteins 

Contains 4 different proteins 

Contains 12 different proteins 

Cell membrane lipid structure and major polymer in the cell walls

Branched  hydrocarbon chains attached to glycerol by ether linkages

No peptidoglycans

Unbranched fatty acid chains attached to glycerol by ester linkages


Unbranched fatty acid chains attached to glycerol by ester linkages

No Peptidoglycans

Sensitivity to antibiotics

Not sensitive to some that affect bacteria

Sensitive to some that affect Eukarya

Sensitive to traditional antibacterial antibiotics

Resistant to most  antibiotics that affect Eukarya

Resistant to traditional antibacterial antibiotics

Sensitive to most that affect Eukaryotic cells

Source: Kaiser, G.  (2007). Classification: The Three Domain System.5




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Comments (6)

Keerat Dhatt said

at 10:49 pm on Oct 25, 2010

I added a couple of rows to this table, but feel free to delete if you feel it is not relevant enough information to include

SKotelnikova said

at 8:43 pm on Nov 2, 2010

I think it was a good idea to add this table. I appreciate the complexity of the topic. Archaea are very interesting organisms that we did not know to exist in variable environments until very recently. It may be interesting for you to learn that 50% of all living creature in the seawater column at the depth of below 500 meters are actually archaea. They survive in total darkness and cold, thriving on very low nutrients if any at all. There are some metabolic surprices awaiting for us when we learn how to culture these organisms.

SKotelnikova said

at 4:58 pm on Nov 15, 2010

I have a book titled "Archaea" edited by Ricardo Caviiccahioli , 2007, presenting a good example of description of Archaeal differences and diversity already in the introductory chapter. Would you like to use it?

SKotelnikova said

at 5:00 pm on Nov 15, 2010

RNA polymerase of Archaea may contain up to 11 subunits

SKotelnikova said

at 5:26 pm on Nov 15, 2010

incert the following link when descriing biotech applications of archaeal enzymes and polymers http://www.archaezyme.com/ and to http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/archaea/archaea.html when describing the diversity

SKotelnikova said

at 8:51 am on Nov 19, 2010

I edited raw one in the table

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