by Chelsi Cassilly
In the tale of the Princess and the Pea, the royalty of a young princess is confirmed by her ability to detect a single pea under 20 mattresses and 20 quilts. This remarkable sensitivity, while likely creating an unbearable life for this princess, pays dividends in the world of immunology where appropriate responses are absolutely crucial.
As you well know, bacteria are divided into two groups, historically known as Gram positives and Gram negatives (Archaea are all Gram negative as they lack the telling peptidoglycan). By and large, Gram positives have a cell envelope consisting of a single membrane and a thick layer of...
... in the case of red parrot feathers the pigment has the added benefit of protecting the plumage from bacterial degradation. Today I stay on the topic of animal coloration by describing the peculiar pelage pigment of sloths. Exactly what constitutes an eye-catching color is, of course, in the eye of the beholder.