HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Frozen 'lake' beneath Antarctica ideal to test sterile drilling techniques

ntarctica and Greenland in search of exotic, deep-ice bacteria new to science. With a fluorescence microscope mounted inside the cold box, they can search for the faint light emitted by fluorescing bacteria.

"With the refrigerated microscope, we can catch any microbes trapped in liquid veins in their icy habitats," Price said. "This greatly reduces the possibility of contamination. If we just looked in melted ice, we wouldn't know where the bacteria had come from."

Price laid out his reasons for looking in frozen ice for unusual microbes in a paper in the February 1, 2000, issue of PNAS. He argued that ice-loving bacteria, or psychrophiles, could easily live in interconnecting veins of liquid water formed where three ice crystals intersect. Such microbes could survive for hundreds of thousands of years at a temperature just below freezing, metabolizing but probably not multiplying. They would have to endure darkness, 400 times the pressure at the surface, no oxygen, a starvation diet and probably a highly acidic or salty environment.

He estimated that colder ice as old as 400,000 years could still support one cell per cubic centimeter.

Drilling in Antarctic ice, including to within about 100 meters of Lake Vostok, has turned up some bacteria, according to Russian scientists, but all were known before. Bacteria also have been found in ocean ice. Price and other scientists hope to discover new species in solid ice, analogous to the novel thermophiles found in hot seafloor vents living at temperatures above the sea-level boiling point of water (100C or 212F).

All this makes it essential that drills not introduce bacteria into a new environment, whether a sub-glacial lake isolated for half a million years or the ice caps of Mars. No sterile drilling has ever been achieved, Price said, though some drilling under "aseptic" conditions has been claimed. Even the sterilization procedure taken before sending the Voyager spacecraft to M
'"/>

Contact: Robert Sanders
rls@pa.urel.berkeley.edu
510-643-6998
University of California - Berkeley
1-Jul-2002


Page: 1 2 3 4 5

Related biology news :

1. The Frozen Zoo: the University of New Orleans and the new world of saving endangered species
2. Frozen pictures allow far-reaching glimpse into the cells protein factory
3. Uncovering mysteries beneath the Earths surface
4. Search beneath lawns provides insight into backyard biodiversity
5. Research finds life 1000 feet beneath ocean floor
6. URI scientists study life buried deep beneath the ocean floor
7. First global-scale assessment of biodiversity beneath our feet
8. The Hunters Breath tells a story of adventure and discovery in Antarctica
9. A lost world: Two previously unknown dinosaurs discovered in Antarctica
10. Explanation offered for Antarcticas blood falls
11. Facing extreme ice conditions, coast guard, NSF deploy second icebreaker to Antarctica

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:6/20/2016)... Securus Technologies, a leading provider of ... safety, investigation, corrections and monitoring announced that after ... secured the final acceptance by all three (3) ... Systems (MAS) installed. Furthermore, Securus will have contracts ... by October, 2016. MAS distinguishes between legitimate wireless ...
(Date:6/7/2016)... June 7, 2016  Syngrafii Inc. and San ... relationship that includes integrating Syngrafii,s patented LongPen™ eSignature ... This collaboration will result in greater convenience for ... union, while maintaining existing document workflow and compliance ... ...
(Date:6/1/2016)... 2016 Favorable Government Initiatives Coupled ... Criminal Identification to Boost Global Biometrics System Market Through ... Research report, " Global Biometrics Market By Type, ... Opportunities, 2011 - 2021", the global biometrics market is ... account of growing security concerns across various end use ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... Cancer experts from Austria, Hungary, ... be a new and helpful biomarker for malignant pleural mesothelioma. Surviving Mesothelioma has ... it now. , Biomarkers are components in the blood, tissue or body ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... Newly ... technologies, services and solutions to the healthcare market. The company's primary focus is ... manufacturing, sales and marketing strategies that are necessary to help companies efficiently bring ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... 27, 2016  Liquid Biotech USA ... of a Sponsored Research Agreement with The University ... (CTCs) from cancer patients.  The funding will be ... correlate with clinical outcomes in cancer patients undergoing ... then be employed to support the design of ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... -- Regular discussions on a range of subjects including policies, debt ... said Poloz. Speaking at a lecture to the ... pointed to the country,s inflation target, which is set by ... "In certain areas there needs to ... goals, why not sit down and address strategy together?" ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: