The nanobugs® are a unique combination of science and imagination. The nanobugs® characters represent bacteria, viruses, and fungi (microbes). Their cartoon image reveals natural characteristics of the microbe or the infection it causes. The bacteria and fungi nanobugs® are “morphologically correct”; that means their body image matches their shape as observed under the microscope – rods, spheres, chains, or clusters. Anaerobic bacteria do not grow in the presence of oxygen so those nanobugs® appear with gas masks. Some nanobugs® have a “force field”” around them to show that they are antibiotic resistant.
The nanobugs® viruses are given a spherical shape and only one eye to represent the nucleic acid core of the virus. The nanobugs® viruses are black and white drawings symbolizing the fact that they are parasites, which can’t live independently; they require living cells to survive. The only color on a nanobugs® virus appears at the point of antibody attachment. This would be the “Achilles´ heel” of the virus because the attachment of a human antibody causes either neutralization or destruction of the virus.
Some of the nanobugs® are pathogenic – meaning they cause disease and infection in humans. And some are part of the normal flora of the human body – meaning they help us digest food in the intestines or protect other areas of the body from invading pathogenic nanobugs®. By learning about the different nanobugs® we can develop behaviors and strategies to stay healthy – avoiding some nanobugs® and being thankful for others.