Topics: Bioluminescence, Dinoflagellate, Bacteria Pages: 4 (1325 words) Published: June 19, 2011

Have you ever experienced a light show underwater? No, you are right that is not and can not be actually lights with electricity, but is the notorious scientific discovery of bioluminescence. One of the earliest sightings was by Aniximenes in 500 B.C. where he described that the alluring light show as “glowing when he struck the sea with an oar”. People have observed bioluminescence countless times ever since. In the Mesopelagic zone of the ocean, which is about 200m to 1000m in depth, almost 90% of marine organisms are bioluminescent. Bioluminescence is defined as “the emission of light from a living organism that functions for its survival or propagation”. It is a "cold" light, resulting from a specific biochemical mechanism involving chemical processes, often specific for that organism. The organisms that posses this ability occur mostly in the salt water marine environment, within glowing fungi, and a select few number of insects; for instance the fireflies, centipedes, and earthworms. In addition, it known as one of the major communication mechanisms. I have once been defined as “the process by which energy from a chemical reaction is transformed into light energy”. Marine bioluminescence is produced by an incredible range of organisms, from bacteria and single-celled protists to fish and squid. Bioluminescence is a form of luminescence, or "cold light" emissio. Ninety percent of deep-sea marine life is estimated to produce bioluminescence in some way.

Bioluminescence, the emission of ecologically functional light by living organisms, emerged independently on several occasions, yet the evolutionary origins of most bioluminescent systems remain obscure. We propose that the luminescent substrates of the luminous reactions (luciferin) are the evolutionary core of most systems, while luciferases, the enzymes catalyzing the photogenic oxidation of the luciferin, serve to optimize the expression of the endogenous chemiluminescent properties...
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