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:6/29/2015)... Research and Markets( http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/zj7h4f/latin_america ) has ... Sensors Market - Growth, Trends & Forecasts (2014-2020)" ... Biomedical Sensors market is estimated at $0.65 billion by ... 2014-2020 The near future will bring Biomedical ... each individual. These sensors can be set to trigger ...
(Date:6/24/2015)... June 24, 2015 The biologics safety testing ... drivers for the market include growth of the pharmaceutical ... drug launches. Over the years, the number of drug ... and 2010, the FDA approved 225 drug applications and ... Europe accounted for 3,822 of ...
(Date:6/23/2015)... MINNETONKA, Minn. , June 23, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... technology company that supports the entire spectrum of ... iMedNet ™ , the company,s ... has been awarded a Silver 2015 Stevie® Award ... the Health Products & Services Website category.  The ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Latin America Biomedical Sensors Market Report 2015-2020 2Biological Safety Testing Market by Application, Product, & Test - Global Forecast to 2019 2Biological Safety Testing Market by Application, Product, & Test - Global Forecast to 2019 3Biological Safety Testing Market by Application, Product, & Test - Global Forecast to 2019 4MedNet Solutions' iMedNet eClinical Wins Silver Stevie Award 2
(Date:7/1/2015)... BANGALORE, India , July 1, 2015 ... that uses next generation sequencing technology to empower cancer ... Storrer as chief executive officer. In his expanded ... responsible for all strategy, business expansion and worldwide operations ... served as Strand,s chairman and CEO since its founding ...
(Date:7/1/2015)... -- InferMed , s ... will augment ... olutions suite   Elsevier , a ... services, announced today the acquisition of  InferMed , a ... InferMed,s Arezzo technology supports clinicians in choosing the ...
(Date:6/30/2015)... ... June 30, 2015 , ... Students and ... in the first half of “Integrative Biotechnology,” an applied biotechnology course team-taught by ... 2014, this course combines students from both universities and is taught on both ...
(Date:6/30/2015)... -- Today, Americord Registry, one of the fastest growing cord blood ... partner at Kirkland & Ellis LLP, as the newest member ... http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20150630/226958LOGO   "We are thrilled about Andrew ... Smithmyer , CEO of Americord. "He brings a wealth of ... Americord,s growth and vision." Andrew Horne ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Strand Life Sciences Names Scott A. Storrer CEO as Company Continues Global Expansion with Focus on Precision Medicine Product 2Strand Life Sciences Names Scott A. Storrer CEO as Company Continues Global Expansion with Focus on Precision Medicine Product 3Elsevier Acquires InferMed, Provider of Clinical Decision Support Technology 2Elsevier Acquires InferMed, Provider of Clinical Decision Support Technology 3Elsevier Acquires InferMed, Provider of Clinical Decision Support Technology 4Rivier University and Beijing City University Academic and Cultural Exchanges Begin 2Americord Registry Announces Andrew Horne as Advisory Board Member 2
Cached News: