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taxonomy the science of describing, naming, and classifying organisms
taxon any named taxonomic group of any rank in the hierachical classification of organisms; for example, family, genus, or species
binomial nomenclature a system for giving each organism a two-word scientific name that consists of the genus name followed by the species name
genus the level of classification that comes after family and that contains similiar species
phylogeny the evolutionary history of a species or taxonomic group
cladistics a phylogenic classification system that uses shared derived characters and ancestry as the sole criterion for grouping taxa
cladogram a diagram that is based on patterns of shared derived traits that shows the evolutionary relationships between groups of organisms.
derived character a feature that evolved only within a particular taxonomic group
Bacteria extremely small, single-celled organisms that usually ave a cell wall and that usually reproduce by binary fission
Archaea prokaryotes (most of which are known to live in extreme environments) that are distinguished from other prokaryotes by differences in their genetics and in the makeup of their cell wall
Eukarya one of the three domains of life, contains all eukaryotes in kingdoms Protista, Plantae, Fungi, and Animalia
virus a nonliving, infectious particle composed of a nucleic acid and a protein coat; it can invade and destroy a cell
pathogen a living organism or nonliving particle that causes an infectious disease
bacteriophage a virus that infects bacteria
lytic infection infectious pathway of a virus in which the host cells are destroyed
lysogenic infection infectious pathway of a virus in which the host cells are not immediately destroyed and the nucleic acid is incorporated into the host cell genome
vaccine a substance prepared from killed or weakened pathogens and introduced into a body to produce immunity
plasmid a genetic structure unique to prokaryotes that can replicate independently of the main chromosome(s) of a cell; usually, a circular DNA molecule.
bioremediation the biological treatment of hazardous waste by natural or genetically engineerd microorganisms
toxin a substance that is produced by one organism and that is poisonous to other organisms
antibiotic a substance that can inhibit the growth of or kill some microorganisms, specifically bacteria
Created by: lpgullett