HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Life In Antarctic Ice May Compare To Mars

CORVALLIS, Ore. - Bacterial colonies are thriving underneath ice on one of the coldest, driest deserts on Earth, researchers have discovered, in conditions that might compare to those on Mars or Europa and provide insights for life forms that could be found elsewhere in our solar system.

The study will be reported Friday in the journal Science.

This study was conducted on ice-covered lakes in the McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica, which has an average annual temperature about 68 degrees below zero and gets less than four inches of precipitation a year.

But in that frigid, arid environment, scientists at Oregon State University and four other institutions found liquid water pockets embedded about six feet deep in solid ice, where a combination of sediments, water and solar radiation during long summer days supports a viable population of bacteria.

"This is a very barren environment with virtually nothing we usually associate with living organisms," said Stephen Giovannoni, an associate professor of microbiology at Oregon State University. "But these photosynthetic cyanobacteria are alive, self-sufficient, and growing. They're able to live through the harsh freeze-thaw cycle of the seasons, fix nitrogen and release oxygen as they make carbohydrates from water and carbon dioxide."

"They have their own little world there we knew nothing about."

The nutritional requirements of these life forms are minimal, Giovannoni said - a little light, water, carbon dioxide, phosphate, nitrate and other minerals. But in fact the primitive life processes they are undertaking are quite similar to those that first formed the oxygen-rich atmosphere of Earth and made higher life forms possible.

And in the study, the researchers cite two locations where they feel conditions may exist that are similar to those found in barren Antarctica - Mars, and a large moon of Jupiter, Europa.

"It's been
'"/>

Contact: Stephen Giovannoni
giovanns@bcc.orst.edu
541-737-1835
Oregon State University
25-Jun-1998


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Dispute over life in Antarctic lake
2. Design competition for new Antarctic Research Station
3. The Hunters Breath tells a story of adventure and discovery in Antarctica
4. Antarctic fish study may aid cardiac research
5. A lost world: Two previously unknown dinosaurs discovered in Antarctica
6. Abandoned penguin colonies may help refine Antarctic climate studies
7. British Antarctic Survey wins environment award
8. Explanation offered for Antarcticas blood falls
9. Antarctic penguins thrive in ocean oases
10. Huge iceberg wreaks havoc on Antarctic marine ecosystem, study finds
11. Huge Antarctic iceberg makes a big splash on sea life

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Life Antarctic Ice May Compare Mars

(Date:10/15/2014)... resistance to bacterial pneumonia in female mice to an ... Females are naturally more resistant to respiratory infections than ... that increased resistance to bacterial pneumonia in female mice ... (NOS3). They also show that this enzyme is ultimately ... estrogen. , The team, lead by Professor Lester Kobzik ...
(Date:10/14/2014)... Research shows SIRT6—a protein known to inhibit the ... of skin cancers by turning on an enzyme that ... , Previously considered protective, SIRT6 is part of a ... genomic stability and prevent some of the genetic flaws ... can lead to cancer. This study, in the journal,s ...
(Date:10/14/2014)... 14, 2014 – High doses of fish oil supplements, rich ... common type of irregular heartbeat in which the heart can ... of the AFFORD trial led by the Montreal Heart Institute ... of Cardiology on October 7th. , For the trial, ... were randomly assigned to 4 grams of fish oil a ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Two-faced gene: SIRT6 prevents some cancers but promotes sun-induced skin cancer 2
(Date:10/20/2014)... VIENNA , October 20, 2014 ... of gastrointestinal (GI) disorders and the delivery of care ... liver diseases and worrying inequalities in the provision of ... survey, which was commissioned by United European Gastroenterology (UEG), ... greater political and public awareness of the burden of ...
(Date:10/20/2014)... OncLive® is pleased to ... Thomas Jefferson University has joined its Strategic Alliance ... Partnership program, the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at ... of the Center’s cutting-edge research programs, comprehensive approach ... other health care professionals from the Sidney Kimmel ...
(Date:10/19/2014)... The Latin American hardware encryption display ... America with analysis and forecast of revenue. This market ... expected to reach $2,366.8 million by 2018, at a ... through the TOC of the Latin American hardware encryption ... analysis provided. It also provides a glimpse of the ...
(Date:10/19/2014)... 2014 The Asia-Pacific Bromine Market ... Asia-Pacific with analysis and forecast of revenue. , ... Bromine Market report, to get an idea of ... glimpse of the segmentation in the Asia-Pacific bromine ... figures. , http://www.micromarketmonitor.com/market/asia-pacific-bromine-6741503144.html , Bromine ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Major Survey Reveals Changing Trends and Inequalities in Healthcare Provision for Gastrointestinal Disorders Across Europe 2Major Survey Reveals Changing Trends and Inequalities in Healthcare Provision for Gastrointestinal Disorders Across Europe 3Major Survey Reveals Changing Trends and Inequalities in Healthcare Provision for Gastrointestinal Disorders Across Europe 4Major Survey Reveals Changing Trends and Inequalities in Healthcare Provision for Gastrointestinal Disorders Across Europe 5Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Thomas Jefferson University Partners With OncLive 2Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Thomas Jefferson University Partners With OncLive 3The Latin American hardware encryption display market is expected to reach $2,366.8 million by 2018 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 2The Latin American hardware encryption display market is expected to reach $2,366.8 million by 2018 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 3The Asia-Pacific Bromine Market is estimated to grow to $4,080.1 million by 2018 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 2The Asia-Pacific Bromine Market is estimated to grow to $4,080.1 million by 2018 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 3
Cached News: