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:
(Date:10/29/2014)... both genetic and environmental, have been blamed for ... Some, such as a family history of schizophrenia, ... Toxoplasma gondii , a parasite transmitted by ... viewed with skepticism. , A new study by ... at the University of Pennsylvania,s School of Veterinary ...
(Date:10/29/2014)... household and industrial products are in the environment – ... of them, scientists have yet to determine whether they ... toward doing that by estimating which substances people are ... in the ACS journal Environmental Science & Technology ... the risks to human health of any given substance ...
(Date:10/29/2014)... held in New York City on September 19, 2014, ... Cancer Society Professor of Genome Sciences and Medicine at ... Doctor of Philosophy of Tel Aviv University, was awarded ... , In addition to her honorary degree from TAU, ... TAU School of Medicine, and for the past 18 ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Penn vet professor investigates parasite-schizophrenia connection 2Penn vet professor investigates parasite-schizophrenia connection 3Geneticist and humanitarian: Prof. Mary-Claire King receives Lasker Award 2
(Date:10/31/2014)... York, NY (PRWEB) October 31, 2014 ... such as healthcare, construction, finance and consumer electronics ... For this reason, industry research firm IBISWorld has ... industry to its growing industry report collection. , ... develop software for biometric technologies such as fingerprint, ...
(Date:10/30/2014)...  Ardelyx, Inc. (NASDAQ: ARDX ), ... and metabolic diseases, today announced that it will ... November 6, 2014. Following the announcement, the Ardelyx ... and webcast at 4:30pm ET to review the ... The live webcast can be accessed ...
(Date:10/30/2014)... CA (PRWEB) October 30, 2014 ... today that they have manually curated public data source ... non profit customers. the data is now available ... curates and unifies public and internal data sources for ... and knowledge out of the data that becomes more ...
(Date:10/30/2014)... Grace Century portfolio project, Provia Laboratories , ... the Board, to the National Stem Cell Ethics Committee ... by the Ministry of Health on behalf of the Government ... More than a year after Bahamian Parliament passed the ... Christie said the government has completed the accompanying regulations and ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Biometrics Scan Software in the US Industry Market Research Report Now Available from IBISWorld 2Biometrics Scan Software in the US Industry Market Research Report Now Available from IBISWorld 3Ardelyx to Report Third Quarter 2014 Financial Results on November 6, 2014 2Rancho BioSciences Manually Curated TCGA Data Sets Available 2Grace Century’s Stem Cell Biobank Project Announces Chairman’s Appointment to National Stem Cell Ethics Committee of The Bahamas 2Grace Century’s Stem Cell Biobank Project Announces Chairman’s Appointment to National Stem Cell Ethics Committee of The Bahamas 3
Cached News: