Step aside, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Here’s a story about an organism that dramatically transforms itself when it’s under stress. It turns from a lethargic amoeba into a sprightly, two-armed swimmer.This unlikely single-celled creature is named Naegleria gruberi. It lives in the dirt, under the eucalyptus trees, on the University of California, Berkeley campus.“A lot of people call Naegleria a soil organism, but if you look in dry, sandy soil, you won’t find it,” says Lillian Fritz-Laylin, a graduate student at Berkeley. “It hates to get dried out. So you’ll find it in the mud, or in the pond, or in the bottom of puddles in the woods.”
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