Yesterday I posted about how bacteria use the underground fungal highway to get around and get lucky. I received a tweet this morning from lead author Tom Berthold pointing me to a video of bacteria actually traveling on the surface of a fungus in real time. It is amazing!
Have a look:
The bacteria are using the filaments of soil fungi to travel more efficiently by exploiting the skin of water that encases the fungus. Bacteria require continuous films of water in which to move.
This movie also shows the movement of the fungal cell contents – called cytoplasmic streaming – that occurs as part of normal fungal business. The long tubular filaments of fungi are subdivided into cells, but the walls subdividing them contain pores that allow many components of cytoplasm to stream through. In fungi, this mass flow through individual cells allows the organism to move resources around its body in the absence of a true circulatory system (like our blood vessels or the vascular tissue of plants).
To find out more about bacteria traveling the fungal highway, see yesterday’s post, “Soil Fungi Serve as Bacterial Highways and Dating Services”.