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Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology

Where Science Meets Society

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Pioneering pests
Zeiss Axion A1 Imager Version 4.0

Image provided by Tesfamariam Mekete Mengistu, Michael Gray Lab

Research funded by British Petroleum and the Energy Biosciences Institute

Some species of nematodes (roundworms) are pests that penetrate and feed on roots of switchgrass. Scientists study nematodes because they are the most abundant multicellular animals on the face of the earth. They occur literally everywhere—in soil and decaying matter from the poles to the tropics, in all forms of plant life, and in the bodies of almost all animals, from humans to insects.