HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Microbes on Earth may be key to identifying life on other planets

Evidence of life in Martian meteorites or future rock samples from the Red Planet may be easier to identify thanks to microbes living in hot springs at Yellowstone National Park.

"The existence of life itself can change the physical and chemical attributes in an environment of deposition," said Bruce Fouke, a geologist at the University of Illinois. "By studying the effects of microbial metabolism on the chemistry of the water and on the way minerals are deposited in Earth environments, we can better interpret samples from other planets for signs of life."

For example, various carbonate features -- including tiny, rod-shaped calcite crystals -- found in the Martian meteorite ALH84001 could have been formed by either organic or inorganic means. To help interpret whether such shapes are indicative of life, Fouke has established a systematic model for the deposition of travertine by actively flowing hot springs at Angel Terrace at Mammoth Hot Springs.

"Travertine is a crystalline form of calcite that forms where subsurface waters erupt, cool, de-gas and precipitate calcium-carbonate minerals with a variety of crystal morphologies and chemical compositions," Fouke said. "In this setting, we are examining the environmental feedback mechanisms that exist between water, microbes and the precipitation of travertine."

Mammoth Hot Springs, near the northern boundary of Yellowstone National Park, is one of the world's largest sites of travertine accumulation. The travertine deposits at Mammoth Hot Springs are approximately 8,000 years old, 73 meters thick and cover more than 4 square kilometers.

"Yellowstone is an ideal laboratory because of the high precipitation rates and the abundance of microbes," Fouke said. "By documenting where we find certain calcite shapes in the spring system, we can link those shapes with a particular water flow, chemistry and microbe. With that environmental context, we can start to decipher the geological record and to rec
'"/>

Contact: James E. Kloeppel, Physical Sciences Editor
kloeppel@uiuc.edu
217-244-1073
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
30-Apr-2000


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Microbes eat their way to better concrete
2. Microbes found in Mayan ruins may deteriorate stone from inside out
3. Microbes active in Colorado snows fuel tundra ecosystem
4. Microbes blueprints promise insights into oceans, more
5. Microbes related to infant lung infections reduced using specialized ventilation system device
6. Microbes and the dust they ride in on pose potential health risks
7. "Microbes deep within South African gold mines" subject of NSF lecture
8. Microbes make mine-waste drinkable, Science researchers report
9. Microbes in basalt thrive on mixed diet of toxic waste
10. Microbes work magic on hazardous air pollutants
11. Chemical Reaction Believed To Support Underground Microbes Is Now Unlikely

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Microbes Earth may key identifying life other planets

(Date:10/18/2014)... suspected genetic conditions, a certain type of exome sequencing ... than traditional molecular diagnostic methods, according to a study ... released to coincide with the American Society of Human ... protein­coding region of the genome (the complete set of ... organism), has been rapidly applied in research settings and ...
(Date:10/17/2014)... news release is available in German . ... millions of sperms every day in order to reproduce? And ... are the topic of the latest issue of the research ... 2014). The evolutionary biologist Steven Ramm from Bielefeld University Bielefeld ... it is not unusual for a female to copulate with ...
(Date:10/17/2014)... in German . ... drugs. When treating overdoses, doctors are often limited to supportive ... there is a combination of drugs involved. So what can ... his grandmother,s pills? ETH professor Jean-Christophe Leroux from the Institute ... answer to this question. "The task was to develop an ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Study examines type of exome sequencing and molecular diagnostic yield 2Study examines type of exome sequencing and molecular diagnostic yield 3Sperm wars 2Emergency aid for overdoses 2Emergency aid for overdoses 3
(Date:10/20/2014)... Tigard, OR (PRWEB) October 20, 2014 ... to participate in an investigational study of donor stem ... nationally in stem cell therapy and has performed clinical ... of this study is to determine if a single ... arthritically affected joints can help reduce pain and inflammation ...
(Date:10/19/2014)... NextCODE Health, which enables clinicians and researchers to use full ... the launch of its new genomic data analysis and collaboration ... of Human Genetics (ASHG) annual meeting in San ... for free beta access, visit www.nextcode.com . A brief ... here . The Exchange: , ...
(Date:10/19/2014)... (PRWEB) October 19, 2014 The Asia-Pacific ... Analytics market in Asia-Pacific with analysis and forecast of ... million in 2014 to $208 million by 2019, at ... 2014 to 2019. , Browse through the TOC of ... idea of the in-depth analysis provided. It also provides ...
(Date:10/19/2014)... 19, 2014 The report "Unmanned ... Homeland Security), Technology, Payload, Type & by Geography ... the global unmanned ground vehicle market into various ... of market sizes. The report also identifies the ... impacting it along with the adoption trends. , ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Cascade Veterinary Referral Center Seeks Candidates for an Investigational Study of Stem Cells for Dogs with Arthritis 2The NextCODE Exchange: The first global, real-time system for sharing full-resolution genomic data 2The NextCODE Exchange: The first global, real-time system for sharing full-resolution genomic data 3The Asia-Pacific Speech Analytics market is estimated to reach $208 million by 2019 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 2The Asia-Pacific Speech Analytics market is estimated to reach $208 million by 2019 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 3The Asia-Pacific Speech Analytics market is estimated to reach $208 million by 2019 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 4Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) Market Estimated to Reach $8.26 Billion by 2020 - New Research Report by MarketsandMarkets 2Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) Market Estimated to Reach $8.26 Billion by 2020 - New Research Report by MarketsandMarkets 3Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) Market Estimated to Reach $8.26 Billion by 2020 - New Research Report by MarketsandMarkets 4Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) Market Estimated to Reach $8.26 Billion by 2020 - New Research Report by MarketsandMarkets 5
Cached News: