Effect of Cold Temperatures on Bacteria Watch

ghostevasion
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Hey guys,
So I understand that a lower temperature decreases bacterial activity or even causes bacteria to become dormant, but why is this? I assume it's to do with enzyme activity within the cell but I can't structure how I would answer this kind of question at all... If anyone could help, that would be great!
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Eloades11
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(Original post by ghostevasion)
Hey guys,
So I understand that a lower temperature decreases bacterial activity or even causes bacteria to become dormant, but why is this? I assume it's to do with enzyme activity within the cell but I can't structure how I would answer this kind of question at all... If anyone could help, that would be great!
The bacteria has an optimal temperature for which it's metabolic functions can take place at a steady rate. Since it would deviate from it's optimal temperature, the cell would adapt to identifying it is outside of it's ideal temperature range. Some species would even remain dormant until more favourable temperatures/conditions are reached. A lower temperature would slow down cell metabolism and thus prolonging cell growth.
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Kemics
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It's not in the syllabus as far as I can see. But as I understand it bacteria arn't really capable of processing large molecules. They secret enzymes that break up larger molecules into smaller substances they can absorb. So I think the cold affects the enzymes secreted by bacteria which affects how much 'food' is available for them?

Be good if someone could confirm that?
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Eloades11
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(Original post by Kemics)
It's not in the syllabus as far as I can see. But as I understand it bacteria arn't really capable of processing large molecules. They secret enzymes that break up larger molecules into smaller substances they can absorb. So I think the cold affects the enzymes secreted by bacteria which affects how much 'food' is available for them?

Be good if someone could confirm that?
It depends on what you mean by processing. Some of the larger macromolecules required for growth such as long carbohydrates have specific transport mechanisms for cellular uptake. These can be broken down into smaller chains which can then be metabolised. All of this occurs mostly within the cytoplasm, as far as I'm aware. Although it can depend entirely on the molecules and type of bacteria in question.

The cold doesn't affect how enzymes are produced or secreted, it may affect their gene expression through complex regulatory procedures, but it mainly affects enzyme kinetics.
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