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棍形藻:极其迷人的水晶样群落

Bacillaria: Distractingly Beautiful Crystal Colonies

《微观旅途》
When you look out at a body of water
当你看向一片水体时
whether it’s a pond, river, ocean
无论是池塘 河流 还是海洋
even your own bathtub
甚至可以是你浴缸里的水
you are peering into the home of countless microorganisms.
你都正在凝视着无数微生物的家园
Some are simple, others more complex.
它们或简单 或更加复杂
And perhaps among the most stunning are diatoms,
其中硅藻或许是最绚丽的微生物之一
though they are probably not in your bathtub.
不过它们应该不会出现在你的浴缸水里
These are photosynthetic, single-celled eukaryotes
硅藻是一类进行光合作用的单细胞真核生物
whose silica shells render them almost like jewels.
它们的硅质外壳使之看起来极像珠宝
Their sparkly and distinctive appearance
它们那耀眼且独特的外表
have captivated microbiologists
自18世纪伊始
since the earliest days of the field in the 18th century.
就一直强烈吸引着微生物学家们
But we suspect that most of you haven’t heard of Bacillaria,
但我猜你们多数人都还没听说过棍形藻
one of the earliest diatoms described in the scientific literature.
它是在科学文献中最早被描述过的硅藻之一
They’re like one of those deeply specific
它们就像是你在探索新爱好时
niches you find when you’re exploring a new hobby,
所发现的一个非常独特的小众领域
one of those narrow obsessions that you had no clue existed
你找不到这个极小众嗜好的相关线索
until you happened upon a forum
直到你偶然发现了一个
about 1990s Swedish hip hop that goes back 300 pages.
关于九十年代瑞典嘻哈音乐的 长达300页的论坛
We have not stumbledon any 300-page bacillaria forums
我们还没碰到过300页的棍形藻论坛
though we are open to suggestions
如果你知道某个还不错的论坛
if you know of a good one.
我们会欣然接受你的安利
But it does seems like people who are interested in bacillaria
不过确实 对棍形藻感兴趣的人似乎
are really interested in bacillaria,
就会极其感兴趣
including one notable
其中一个著名的例子就是
drunken attempt to mimic their behavior, as humans.
有些人在烂醉后 会试图模仿它们的行为
We’ll get to that more in a bit.
这点会在视频的后面再详细说
The source of the fascination lies in
它们的这种魅力源自于
the mystery and contradictions of the microbe’s movement,
微生物移动的神秘性和矛盾性
which has so mesmerized us
而这些对我们来说太过于诱惑
that it may have obscured
以至于它可能掩盖了
some other truths about the organism.
关于这些微生物的其它事实
Let’s observe this dance
让我们把镜头拉远
from the cheap seats, fully zoomed out,
在稍远处 观察它们的“曼妙舞姿”
so we can watch them perform across this microscopic stage.
这样 我们就能欣赏它们横穿整个微观舞台的“演出”了
The Bacillaria paxillifer begins compact,
派格棍形藻起初排列紧凑
but it quickly extends in both directions.
但很快它就开始向两边延伸
And extends, and extends some more
延伸 继续再延伸
until it is stretched across a good portion of the screen.
一直到穿过了大半的显示屏
Then it contracts back inward,
然后它又向内收缩
back into that more discreet state,
重回那个更加不起眼的姿态
only to renew that dance again,
只为再次“翩翩起舞”
this time reaching only in one direction.
不过这次 它只朝一边延伸
It’s a remarkable feat of microscopic acrobatics,
这真是一次出色的微观杂技表演
taking the organism across the stage even as it stays in one spot.
这些微生物能跨越整个舞台 即使它们一直呆在原地
In fact, this Bacillaria’s movement is so coordinated
实际上 这种棍形藻的运动非常协调
it almost seems like a worm, a weird one,
它几乎像一条蠕虫 还很怪异的那种
like a pokey abstraction of
就像是旁边那条到处蠕动的线虫的
the nematode squirming around next to it.
一种慢吞吞的抽象化
The first person to describe Bacillaria paxillifer and its dance
1783年 奥托•弗里德里希•穆勒首次
was Otto Friedrich Müller in 1783.
描述了派格棍形藻及其“舞姿”
He described the organism as a “peg-animal”.
他将这种生物描述为“棍虫”
The pegs, as he saw them, were inflexible cylinders
正如他所见 它的棍子是一些不可弯曲的圆柱体
that contained some sort of yellow creature or film.
其含有一些黄色的生物或膜状物
When the organism was at rest, the pegs formed a quadrilateral.
当这生物不动时 这些棍子会形成四边形
And when it moved,
而当它移动时
the outer pegs began to slide,
外侧棍子会开始滑动
followed by their neighbor
接下来再是周围的其它棍子
until a whole sequence of pegs slid out into a line.
直到这一整串棍子都发生滑动而形成一条直线
Remember, this was the earliest days of our understanding of the microcosmos,
记住 这是我们对微观世界最早期的认知
when we still thought of life
那时的我们仍认为生命的形式
as being divided only between plants and animals.
只能分为植物和动物两种
And based on his observations,
基于自己的观察
Müller struggled with an important question
穆勒努力去解决一个重要的问题
were the Bacillaria he was looking at a single animal?
自己所观察到这种硅藻到底是单个独立的动物呢?
or was it some kind of animal group
还是某类动物群体
that came together and
它们聚集在一起
coordinated this incredible formation?
然后分工协作形成了这个不可思议的构造?
He debated himself back and forth,
他进行了反复思考
ultimately deciding that this must be just one single animal.
最终认定这肯定只是单个独立的动物
After all, he could think of no parallel example
毕竟 他找不到与之类似的例子
of such synchronized movement among animals in the macro world.
在宏观世界 没有哪种群体动物能做到这般协同运动
It seemed improbable that nature would conceive of such a thing at any level,
无论哪个阶段 自然界似乎都不可能孕育出这类生物
and honestly, it still does.
老实说 现阶段也仍如此
While Müller acknowledged that the microcosmos was full of strange things,
尽管穆勒承认 在微观世界中无奇不有
in the framework of how we understood nature at that time,
但在当时那种对自然界理解的框架下
it seemed to him that this must be one animal
于他而言 这似乎只能是单个动物
an animal he named Vibrio paxillifer.
他将其命名为派格弧菌
Despite the value of his observations and his reasoning,
尽管穆勒的观察和推理都很有意义
Müller was, of course, wrong.
但当然了 他是错的
The strange animal he had seen was actually not one animal.
他所看到的奇怪动物 实际上并不是单个动物
It was not even an animal at all.
它甚至根本就不是动物
Those pegs were each microscopic individuals
那些棍子每个都是微小单体
that had assembled into that larger entity,
它们聚集在一起 而成为那更大的实体
and through various reclassifications over the years,
在经过多年来各种各样的重新分类后
Vibrio paxillifer eventually became known as Bacillaria paxillifer,
派格弧菌最终被称为派格棍形藻
a cosmopolitan diatom found in both marine and freshwater environments.
这种硅藻存在于世界各地的海洋和淡水环境中
Each Bacillaria colony is actually the product of a series of divisions,
实际上 每个棍形藻群都是一系列细胞分裂的结果
meaning that this whole ensemble is made up of clones.
也就是说 这整个集合体是由克隆所组成
The individual cells have a slit called the raphe,
其中的单个细胞都有一条细缝 称为纵裂缝
through which they excrete a kind of adhesive substance
通过纵裂缝 它们能分泌一种粘性物质
that keeps them attached to their neighboring sister cell.
这能使它们与相邻细胞相互粘附
The movements of the colony are likely driven by light.
这种群落的移动很可能是由光照所驱动
At night, they’re usually in their compact state, remaining still.
在夜晚 它们通常处于收缩状态 且保持不动
And during the day, they stay extended.
而到了白天 它们则保持延展状态
The cycle of expansion and contraction over and over,
它们会反复地进行着“延伸和收缩”这个循环
that’s mostly observed at dawn and dusk.
而这最常见于黎明和黄昏时分
Bacillaria paxillifer is also known as Bacillaria paradoxa,
派格棍形藻也被称为奇异棍形藻
which is a fitting name
这是个很贴切的名字
because despite all of the mechanisms we’ve been able to decipher,
因为就算用上我们所能解译的全部机理
there are many questions left to understand.
仍存在许多还未理解的问题
There’s no obvious method of communication between cells
这些细胞间没有明显的交流方式
or obvious moving parts within each one,
个体内部也没有明显的运动部位
so how do they synchronize their movement?
那它们是如何做到同步运动的?
How do they understand where their neighbors are?
又如何知晓周围同类的位置呢?
These are the same questions you might ask
你可能会产生同样的问题
while you’re watching a talented ensemble of dancers,
当你看到一个极具才情的舞队时
where each individual’s movements
舞队中 每个人的动作
are perfectly aligned through intricate choreography,
在经过复杂的编排后 都能完美地相互搭配
but that display is a feat of training and precision,
但这种表演是辛勤训练和精确演绎的成果
guided by music and internalized by each performer.
它是由音乐指导并被每个表演者所内化的结果
These are microbes.
而它们是微生物
What directs them?
是什么在指挥它们呢?
That question has been the basis of
在几个世纪内 这个问题一直都是
many a diatomist’s fascination with Bacillaria for centuries,
许多硅藻研究者沉迷于棍形藻的基础
a fascination that has preoccupied minds
而这种痴迷使得他们全神贯注
and inspired creative feats.
并激发出许多创造性的成果
In his description of them,
在对它们进行描述时
Müller took 10 pages to argue with himself
穆勒用了10页的篇幅来进行自辩
over whether this kind of coordinated movement
这类协同运动究竟是否
between discrete organisms was even possible.
有可能存在于独立的个体间
And we were able to read his words in English
我们能用英语阅读他的那些文字
because they were translated from the original Danish back in 2005.
因为这些文字在2005年就由丹麦语译为了英文
The translator noted that this activity they were engaged in
翻译人员曾言 他们参与的这项活动
was supposed to be a fun, relaxing side project.
曾被认为是一项轻松有趣的副业
A side project that involved having to read Gothic lettering,
但这项副业 必须要阅读哥特式字体
process 18th century, scholarly Danish diction,
不得不处理18世纪时期 学术性的丹麦文用语
and contend with the physical challenges of decaying, old books.
还需应对腐烂旧书所带来的实质性挑战
All that work just to understand
所有的工作都只是为了搞明白
the first words used to describe this species,
最早用于描述这个物种的文字
the foundational text as it were for an ongoing tradition
人类对棍形藻持续不断的观察和迷恋
of Bacillaria observation and obsession.
以这段文本为起点和基础
There are whole fandoms,
它们有很多纯粹的簇拥者
lovely as they are, built on much less effort.
而因为它们很可爱 这并不需要太多努力
There’s also the story of the 1987 North American Diatom Symposium,
还有一个发生在1987年的北美硅藻研讨会上的故事
where around 30 people attempted their own transformational work
在研讨会中 大约有30人尝试了变身
the Bacillaria Shuffle
跳起了仿棍形藻的舞蹈
Alcohol was involved as what’s a chant that went
他们喝了酒 然后唱起了这样的歌
“Do the bacillaria, do the bacillaria.”
“就做个棍形藻吧 做个棍形藻吧”
In the words of someone who was there,
用某些在场人的话说就是
the dance was marked by a quote
这个舞蹈的特点就一句话
“General lack of physical coordination of the individual persons.”
“个体之间普遍缺乏身体协调性”
You could take that as a condemnation of the people involved,
你可以认为这是一种对参与人员的谴责
or as an homage to the much simpler
亦或是对这种微生物的崇高敬意
and yet much more synchronized organism who inspired them.
它们远比人类简单 却协调得多 给我们带来启发
But in focusing so much on this movement,
但我们太过聚焦于它们的运动
it’s taken time to uncover other secrets of the Bacillaria.
也是时候该花时间揭开棍形藻的其他秘密了
Since the days of Müller,
自从穆勒发表观点后
scientists have thought that there was just one species
科学家们一直认为棍形藻仅存在一个物种
distributed in all sorts of waters, all around the world.
它分布于世界各地的所有水域中
After all, how many species could there be exhibiting
毕竟 能有多少个物种会展现出
such a complicated way of life?
如此复杂的生存方式呢?
But in 2007,
但就在2007年
more than 200 years after Bacillaria had first been described,
距首次描述棍形藻已过去200多年后
a scientist studied the internal structures of the organism
有一位科学家研究了该生物的内部结构
and realized that there are actually several distinct species
并意识到实际上存在多种不同的物种
distributed in different waters.
它们分布在不同的水域
Müller, the original Bacillaria admirer,
穆勒 那个最早的棍形藻爱好者
wrote of what he saw
曾记下他的所见
quoet: “It is in the microscopical world
引述为 “正是在微观世界中
that such unusual sights most often meet.”
这种不寻常的景象才最常遇到”
The strange dance he observed would go on
他观察到的这种奇怪“舞蹈”会继续
to underpin his incorrect classification of the organism.
支持他那不正确的生物分类法
And over time,
并且随着时间的推移
diatom enthusiasts would continue to be so fixated on this collective behavior,
硅藻狂热者会继续如此沉迷于这个集体性的行为
that it would take time to notice the individuality
以至于很久后才能注意到
of its varied species.
这多变的物种的个体特性
You could almost write a fable around our observations of the organism,
你几乎可以围绕我们对这生物的观察 去写一则寓言
with a simple moral to not be so distracted by beauty.
寓意很简单 不要被美分散注意力
But that feels a little hypocritical on our part
但这对我们来说似乎有些虚伪
given that we savor the diversion of the microcosmos’ allure.
如果考虑到 我们很享受微观世界的极致诱惑
The artistry of nature, whether large or small,
大自然所具有的艺术性 无论多少
has always been an inspiration for scientific inquiry,
一直都是科学探索的灵感源泉
and as researchers come to better understand Bacillaria,
当研究人员对棍形藻有更深入的理解后
there will only be new sources of charm and beauty to discover.
他们将会去探寻全新的美丽及魅力之源
Thank you for coming on this journey with us
感谢与我们一同踏上这趟旅程
as we explore the unseen world that surrounds us.
去探索我们周围的未知世界
And thank you, of course, to all of the people who make this show possible.
当然 也要感谢所有让本节目成功出品的人
If you like it, these are the people to thank,
如果你喜欢这个视频 就可以感谢这些人
our patrons on Patreon.
即众筹网站的所有赞助者
Thank you so much to all of you.
非常感谢你们所有人
If you want to check it out,
如果你想对此进行验证
and help us make more good content,
并帮助我们制作更多优质内容
maybe get some better equipment,
亦或者获得一些更好的设备
you can find us at patreon.com/journeytomicro.
你可以在patreon.com/journeytomicro找到我们
If you want to see more from our Master
如果你想从我们的显微镜专家
of Microscopes James Weiss,
詹姆斯·韦斯那里了解更多详情
you can check out Jam & Germs on Instagram.
你可以去Instagram上搜索Jam & Germs
And if you want to see more from us,
如果你想从我们这了解到更多
there’s probably a subscribe button somewhere nearby.
旁边应该会有个订阅按钮

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视频概述

像水晶一样美丽的硅藻你见过吗?让我带你们体验一番有趣且华丽的微观之旅,让我们一起见识棍形藻与科学家之间的跌宕起伏吧!

听录译者

收集自网络

翻译译者

Warm Bing

审核员

审核员LJ

视频来源

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nysdq_plUTg

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