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38 Difference Between Eubacteria and Archaebacteria

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Due to their small size and prokaryotic cell structure, Eubacteria and Archaebacteria are two major domains of single-celled microorganisms that were previously classed as bacteria. However, as genetic and molecular research progressed, scientists found that they had significant differences that justified their division into independent realms.


Eubacteria, often known as microorganisms, are a varied collection of single-celled microorganisms in the Bacteria domain. They are among the most numerous and widespread creatures on the planet, living in a variety of settings ranging from soil and water to the human body. Eubacteria are important in many ecological processes, such as nutrient cycling, decomposition, and symbiotic partnerships.

Eubacteria are prokaryotic, which means they do not have a genuine nucleus or organelles that are membrane-bound. Their genetic information is structured in a single circular chromosome found in the cell’s nucleoid region. The cell wall of Eubacteria is typically formed of peptidoglycan, a complex carbohydrate that gives structural support and protection to the cell. The composition of the cell wall varies between bacterial species. Eubacteria are classified into several morphologies, including cocci (spherical), bacilli (rod-shaped), spirilla (spiral-shaped), and others.

Eubacteria have a wide range of physiological capabilities. They can be autotrophic, meaning they get their energy from sunlight via photosynthesis (like cyanobacteria) or from inorganic substances via chemosynthesis. They can also be heterotrophic, meaning they get their energy from organic molecules.

Eubacteria reproduce largely through binary fission, which occurs when a single bacterial cell divides into two identical daughter cells. This quick reproduction helps the community grow and respond to changing conditions.


Archaea, commonly referred to as archaebacteria, are a class of single-celled microorganisms that were mistaken for bacteria due to their prokaryotic cell structure and tiny size. Significant genetic, biochemical, and ecological distinctions between archaea and microorganisms, however, have led scientists to designate them as distinct areas of life.

Archaea are well-known for their capacity to grow in harsh circumstances that include high temperatures, high salinity, alkaline or acidic conditions, and anaerobic (low-oxygen) conditions. They were identified in severe conditions such as hot springs and hydrothermal vents, but they have since been detected in soil, oceans, and animal digestive tracts.

Archaea have cell walls that lack peptidoglycan, a component found in bacteria’s cell walls. They may instead have unique compounds such as pseudopeptidoglycan or other specific structures.It cell walls are made up of lipids known as isoprenoids or ether lipids, which differ from the fatty acid-based lipids found in bacterial and eukaryotic cell membranes.

It possesses distinct genetic sequences and molecular machinery that distinguish them from bacteria and eukaryotes. Their genetic code, transcription, and translation processes can be markedly distinct from those of other creatures.

Here are 38 differences between Eubacteria and Archaebacteria:







Bacteria (Bacteria domain)

Archaea (Archaea domain)


Cell Wall

Contains peptidoglycan in the cell wall

Lacks peptidoglycan in the cell wall


Lipid Bilayer

Typically have a phospholipid bilayer with fatty acids

Have ether-linked lipids in the bilayer


Membrane Lipids

Composed of glycerol-ester lipids

Composed of glycerol-ether lipids


Cell Membrane Function

Sensitive to antibiotics like penicillin

Resistant to many antibiotics


Extreme Environments

Generally not found in extreme environments

Often found in extreme environments



Lacks the ability for methanogenesis

Some can perform methanogenesis



Rarely contain introns in their genes

Introns are more common in their genes


RNA Polymerase

Typically have one type of RNA polymerase

Have multiple types of RNA polymerases



Generally lack histone proteins

Have histone-like proteins


RNA Processing

RNA processing is simple

RNA processing is more complex


Sensitivity to pH

Often sensitive to extreme pH conditions

Tolerant of extreme pH conditions


Sensitivity to Temperature

Wide temperature tolerance range

Can thrive in extreme temperatures


Oxygen Sensitivity

Some are anaerobic, while others are aerobic

Many are anaerobic



Rarely extremophiles

Often extremophiles


Hydrothermal Vents

Not commonly found in hydrothermal vents

Often found in hydrothermal vents


Antibiotic Production

Some produce antibiotics

Few produce antibiotics


Cell Membrane Composition

Contains diacyl glycerol tetraethers

Contains diacyl glycerol diethers


Cell Wall Composition

Contains peptidoglycan or pseudopeptidoglycan

Lacks peptidoglycan


RNA Polymerase Sensitivity

Sensitive to rifampin antibiotic

Resistant to rifampin antibiotic


Antibiotic Target

Often targeted by antibiotics like streptomycin

Not typically targeted by common antibiotics


Genetic Transfer Mechanisms

Conjugation, transformation, transduction

Less well-defined genetic transfer mechanisms


Ribosome Sensitivity to Toxins

Sensitive to diphtheria toxin

Resistant to diphtheria toxin


Antibiotic Resistance Mechanisms

Common mechanisms include efflux pumps, mutations

Less common mechanisms for resistance


Circular DNA

Typically have a single circular chromosome

Usually have multiple circular chromosomes


Presence of Introns

Rarely contain introns in their genes

Introns are more common in their genes


Cell Wall Function

Provides structural support and shape

May serve structural or protective functions


Peptidoglycan Function

May provide resistance to osmotic stress

Not present, so no role in osmotic resistance



Rarely include methanogens among them

Often include methanogens among them


Ribosome Sensitivity to Toxins

Sensitive to antibiotics like chloramphenicol

Resistant to chloramphenicol antibiotic



Present in Gram-negative bacteria

Not present



Found in some groups, like Archaea Crenarchaeota

Not found in Archaebacteria


Endospore Formation

Some species can form endospores

Typically do not form endospores


Antibiotic Target

Common target for antibiotics like ampicillin

Not typically targeted by common antibiotics


Nucleotide Base Composition

Often have higher G+C content

Often have lower G+C content



Some are thermophiles

Many are thermophiles


Biochemical Pathways

Have a wide range of metabolic pathways

Unique metabolic pathways


Archaeal Extremophiles

Found in extreme environments like hot springs

Often thrive in extreme environments

Also read: Active Immunity vs Passive Immunity – 26 Key Differences

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s):

Q1. What kinds of Eubacteria are there?

Coli, Streptococcus, Staphylococcus, Bacillus, and Mycobacterium tuberculosis are typical examples of Eubacteria.

Q2. What is the process by which Eubacteria reproduce?

Eubacteria replicate through binary fission, in which a single bacterial cell splits into two identical daughter cells.

Q3. What role does Eubacteria play in the environment?

Eubacteria are important in several ecological processes, including nutrient cycling, breakdown, and nitrogen fixation. Some are utilised in industrial processes as well, such as fermentation and bioremediation.

Q4. What are Archaebacteria extremophiles?

Extremophiles are Archaebacteria that thrive in harsh settings such as hot springs (thermophiles), salty surroundings (halophiles), and acidic environments (acidophiles). These organisms have evolved to survive in environments that would be toxic to most other life forms.

Q5. Can Archaebacteria cause human disease?

Archaebacteria aren’t known to trigger human disease in general. They are not related to common infectious disorders, unlike certain Eubacteria. They are instead more commonly found in severe conditions or specific ecological niches.

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