The real Avatar: ocean bacteria act as 'superorganism'
By Catherine Brahic IN THE movie Avatar, the Na’vi people of Pandora plug themselves into a network that links all elements of the biosphere, from phosphorescent plants to pterodactyl-like birds. It turns out that Pandora’s interconnected ecosystem may have a parallel back on Earth: sulphur-eating bacteria that live in muddy sediments beneath the sea floor. Some researchers believe that bacteria in ocean sediments are connected by a network of microbial nanowires. These fine protein filaments could shuttle electrons back and forth,