I know that the cells of mammals at least stop dividing when they are old, and then die a programmed cell death. Then other cells have to replace them.
But in a bacterial colony, each cell replicates for itself. Obviously, if a division of a bacterial cell of generation N were to produce two new cells of generation N+1, and all bacteria died of old age at generation M, there would be no bacteria left around.
So how is it regulated in bacteria? Are their divisions simply unlimited? Does a cell never die and just divide forever?