The environment in which all are living is completely packed with the beautiful and different type of species.
Microorganisms are one among them. They are small, living creatures which are invisible to our naked eye. Hence they are are also known as microorganisms or microscopic organisms. These organisms include both unicellular or multicellular. Among all microorganisms, some are more beneficial and harmless, while others harmful and disease-causing pathogens. More instances of useful microorganisms are discussed below.
The environment is incomplete without microorganisms. They are a crucial part of the ecosystem and take part in activities like production of minerals like nitrogen, gases like oxygen, carbon dioxide, cleaning by action on dead matters etc. In various industries, microbes are used intentionally due to their role in human welfare.
Food Industry and Beverages
The role of microorganisms in food preparation and beverage manufacturing is known for ages. They are used in the manufacture of bread, curd, wine, and alcohol etc. Lactobacillus bacteria are responsible for the curd formation. They multiply and convert milk into curd. Another example is Yeast which is used commercially for alcohol and wine production. The process is called fermentation. Yeast is also used in baking industries for the preparations of bread and cakes.
Bacteria are not only outside the human body, they live inside the body. Bacteria which persist in the digestive system are collectively known as microflora. They support the process of digestion by releasing certain enzymes. They live in symbiotic association with a human. Other tasks of microflora are vitamin K production and thus help in blood clotting. They also prevent the invasion of the body by other fatal microbes.
Antibiotics are well-known examples of the role of microbes in the medical field. Antibiotics are obtained from microorganisms i.e. one strain of bacteria or fungi is used against another strain. Recently many drugs for a variety of diseases are obtained from microorganisms.
Vaccines are another example as they are obtained from the partially killed or weakened microorganisms used to produce antibodies against an antigen (foreign particles) entering the body.
In the environment, microorganisms have two vital roles- one is an enhancement of soil fertility another is cleaning. Azotobacter, Rhizobium, Clostridium are few examples of Nitrogen-fixing bacteria which play a primary role in transforming atmospheric nitrogen into inorganic compounds. As cleaners, they decompose the dead and organic matter and result in the decay of toxic substances.