HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Water, sediments in ice-bound antarctic lakes may harbor unique microorganisms, ecosystems

Liquid lakes buried thousands of meters below the Antarctic ice sheet are likely the home to unique habitats and creatures that thrive in them. Exploration of those lakes will therefore require extreme care and an international cooperative effort, according to a team of authors writing in the Dec. 6 issue of Nature.

The pressure exerted by the continent-wide ice sheet together with heat generated by the Earth from below and the enormous insulating properties of the overlying ice sheet, may mean that liquid water exists in many -- if not all -- of the lakes. That may mean that they harbor life, according to a team of authors, led by Martin Siegert of Bristol University.

Microbiologists funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), working with ice samples gathered from deep beneath Russia's Vostok Station -- that is thought to be refrozen water from Lake Vostok itself -- have argued that microbes may survive in extreme cold and darkness under more than 4,000 meters of ice. John Priscu of Montana State University, one of those NSF-funded biologists, is a co-author of the paper.

Antarctica is home to more than 70 lakes that lie thousands of meters under the ice sheet. The lakes include one under the South Pole and another, Lake Vostok, deep in the Antarctic interior, that is comparable in size and depth to one of the North American Great Lakes.

Given the conditions in the lakes, the authors state, it is reasonable to believe "that subglacial lakes house a variety of microorganisms potentially unique to subglacial Antarctica and, if they are isolated hydrologically, unique to each lake."

In the Nature article, Priscu and his colleagues also argue that the sediments at the bottom of Lake Vostok, and in other lakes, may also sustain life.

They caution, though, that developing both the technology and the experimental protocols to explore those lakes without contaminating the waters or harming any microbial communit
'"/>

Contact: Peter West
pwest@nsf.gov
703-292-8070
National Science Foundation
5-Dec-2001


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. USGS 1999 Budget Emphasizes Clean Water, Disaster Information, Species And Habitat Research
2. Nutrients, Ground Water, And The Chesapeake Bay - A Link With Pfiesteria?
3. U.S. Geological Survey 1998 Budget: Increased Support For Drinking Water, Earthquakes And Biological Sciences
4. Detoxifying sediments with electrons and UV light
5. Scripps scientists discover rich medical drug resource in deep ocean sediments
6. NSF official describes hunt for antarctic meteorites related to new meteorite evidence of primitive life on Mars
7. Ice-covered antarctic lake may harbor unknown life
8. Dramatic decline of California native frog linked to introduced trout in mountain lakes
9. Lake restrictions make lakeshore property more valuable
10. Water quality in Adirondack lakes responding to acid rain regulations
11. 50 Arctic lakes show dramatic effects of climate warming

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


(Date:8/12/2020)... , ... August 12, 2020 , ... ... monitoring systems that are ideal for public health agencies of all sizes. With ... diseases and helping at-risk individuals find appropriate health care, Mosio helps public health ...
(Date:8/3/2020)... , ... August 03, 2020 , ... ... announced a new partnership with medical equipment manufacturer, Spectrum Solutions, to provide COVID-19 ... to strengthen their laboratory supply chain for more than 10 years. Early in ...
(Date:7/18/2020)... ANTONIO (PRWEB) , ... July 16, 2020 , ... ... ONE that demonstrates the effectiveness of the Invictus Medical Neoasis™ active noise control ... environment. The study reported that the Neoasis™ device attenuated the alarm sounds from ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:7/31/2020)... BEDFORD, Mass. (PRWEB) , ... July 29, 2020 ... ... of highly reliable, solid-state radar transmitter systems that can be configured to drive ... a single controller that can drive one or two switches in a push-pull ...
(Date:7/31/2020)... (PRWEB) , ... July 29, 2020 , ... ... 200 of the top radiation centers in 16 countries, has reached its 20th ... SDX® is now in routine use at top universities including University of Pennsylvania, ...
(Date:7/18/2020)... ... July 16, 2020 , ... “We are thrilled to deliver this new ... only technology of its kind on the market and we were pleased that the ... capacity of traditional cultured ingredients, creating a natural way to extend the shelf life ...
(Date:7/10/2020)... BALTIMORE (PRWEB) , ... July ... ... Baltimore biotechnology company, announced today that Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has ... This broader license allows PathSensors to move into the point-of-care diagnostic market, ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: