cyanobacteria

[sahy-uh-noh-bak-teer-ee-uh, sahy-an-oh-]
plural noun, singular cyanobacterium [sahy-uh-noh-bak-teer-ee-uhm, sahy-an-oh-] . Biology.
blue-green algae.

Origin:
1975–80; cyano-1 + bacteria

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World English Dictionary
cyanobacteria (ˌsaɪənəʊbækˈtɪərɪə)
 
pl n , sing -rium
Former name: blue-green algae a group of photosynthetic bacteria (phylum Cyanobacteria) containing a blue photosynthetic pigment

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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

Cyanobacteria Cy·a·no·bac·te·ri·a (sī'ə-nō-bāk-tēr'ē-ə)
n.
A group of Procaryotae consisting of unicellular or filamentous gram-negative microorganisms that are either nonmotile or possess a gliding motility, may reproduce by binary fission, and photosynthetically produce oxygen; some species capable of fixing nitrogen. Members of this phylum were formerly called blue-green algae.

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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
cyanobacterium   (sī'ə-nō-bāk-tîr'ē-əm)  Pronunciation Key 
Plural cyanobacteria
Any of a phylum of photosynthetic bacteria that live in water or damp soil and were once thought to be plants. Cyanobacteria have chlorophyll as well as carotenoid and phycobilin pigments, and they conduct photosynthesis in membranes known as thylakoids (which are also found in plant chloroplasts). Cyanobacteria may exist as individual cells or as filaments, and some species live in colonies. Many species secrete a mucilaginous substance that binds the cells or filaments together in colored (often bluish-green) masses. Cyanobacteria exist today in some 7,500 species, many of which are symbiotes, and have lived on Earth for 2.7 billion years. Since all species produce oxygen as a byproduct of metabolism, it is thought that much of Earth's atmospheric oxygen can be attributed to cyanobacteria. Many species can also fix nitrogen and so play an important role in the nitrogen cycle. Also called blue-green alga.
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Example sentences
Blue-green algae, also called cyanobacteria, is not a part of the food web.
Sprawling blooms of cyanobacteria have swathed the surfaces of lakes and oceans around the world for billions of years.
The creatures which dared to arise are called cyanobacteria, or blue-green algae.
Technical information on cyanobacteria toxins and symptoms by species.
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