One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A bacterium with a rigid spiral structure, found in stagnant water and sometimes causing disease.
- ‘Possibly it is a true spirillum, portions of which appear in the comma shape, much as in other spirilla - e.g., spirilla undula, which do not always form complete spirals, but consist only of more or less curved rods.’
- ‘The retention of the normal shape that we observed may be caused by steric restrictions on a major change in shape and size by neighboring spirilla and bdellovibrios.’
- ‘These very long, spiraled nascent bdellovibrio were proposed earlier from electron microscope images to be common in spirilla, which are long and coiled themselves.’
Modern Latin, irregular diminutive of Latin spira ‘a coil’.
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