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Endosymbiosis facts for kids

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Mitochondrion 186
Internal symbiont: Mitochondrion has a matrix and membranes, like a free-living proteobacterial cell, from which it may derive.
A representation of the endosymbiotic theory

Endosymbiosis occurs when a symbiont (bacteria, fungi, lichen, etc.) lives inside the body or the cells of another organism. It is a very widespread phenomenon in living things.

The term endosymbiosis is from the Greek: ἔνδον endon "within", σύν syn "together" and βίωσις biosis "living".

Sometimes organims mutually benefit from endosymbiosis. For example, gutless marine worms of the genus Riftia' get nutrition from their endosymbiotic bacteria. This endosymbiosis is obligate; that is, either the endosymbiont or the host cannot survive without the other. However, some endosymbioses can be harmful to either of the organisms involved.

Examples of endosymbiosis

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See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Endosimbionte para niños

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Endosymbiosis Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.