HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
World's most alkaline life forms found near Chicago

Sometimes the most extreme environment for life isn't at the bottom of the ocean or inside a volcano. It's just south of Chicago.

Illinois groundwater scientists have found microbial communities thriving in the slag dumps of the Lake Calumet region of southeast Chicago where the water can reach extraordinary alkalinity of pH 12.8. That's comparable to caustic soda and floor strippers -- far beyond known naturally occurring alkaline environments.

The closest known relatives of some of the microbes are in South Africa, Greenland and the alkaline waters of Mono Lake, California.

"Other alkaline communities have been found at pHs up to 11," says Illinois State Water Survey hydrogeologist George Roadcap. "That's sort of the high end of known natural communities."

Roadcap and his colleagues at the University of Illinois Champaign Urbana came upon the microbes while studying contaminated groundwater created by more than a century of industrial iron slag dumping in southern Illinois and northern Indiana. Roadcap will present details of what appear to be the most alkaline-tolerant life known to date on Tuesday, Nov. 4 at the annual meeting of the Geological Society of America in Seattle, WA.

Genetic analyses at one site revealed bacteria related to Clostridium and Bacillus species. These are found in highly alkaline waters of Mono Lake, tufa columns in Greenland, and cement-contaminated groundwater in a deep gold mine in Africa. Some RNA sequences appeared most closely related to thermophilic, or "heat loving," bacteria found in other parts of the world. The temperatures of the slag dumps are not extraordinary at all, of course. In fact they get pretty cold in the winter, driving the pH even higher, says Roadcap.

At five other sites the dominant microbes belonged to the Proteobacteria class including a large number from the Comamonadacea family of the beta subclass. "In high-pH microcosms experiments, one of these microbes
'"/>

Contact: Ann Cairns
acairns@geosociety.org
303-357-1056
Geological Society of America
4-Nov-2003


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Worlds largest scientific society convenes regional meeting June 2-4 in Indianapolis
2. Worlds oldest modern hummingbirds described in Science
3. Worlds oldest mouse celebrates milestone birthday
4. Worlds largest tiger reserve declared in Myanmar
5. Worlds first databank for all living systems
6. Worlds largest-ever sea turtle symposium to address plummeting populations of sea turtles
7. Worlds first robot scientist proves a major success in the lab
8. Worlds leading mad cow diagnostic company, responds to USDAs additional BSE protection measures
9. Worlds largest scientific society holds regional meeting in Columbia, Mo.
10. Worlds largest forest birds may produce worlds deepest bird calls
11. Worlds largest scientific society holds regional meeting in Long Beach, Calif.

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


(Date:1/29/2020)... STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (PRWEB) , ... January 29, ... ... leader in nuclear receptor and in vitro toxicology testing solutions, has announced a ... Shareholders in the upcoming weeks, INDIGO showed more than a twenty percent increase ...
(Date:1/28/2020)... ... 2020 , ... Blue Health Intelligence (BHI) published an article ... and limit the utilization of high-cost imaging and surgeries for musculoskeletal (MSK) injuries. ... specializes in improving care delivery for MSK conditions. In an independent study using ...
(Date:1/24/2020)... ... ... Shoreline Biome , a microbiome research company that develops tools for characterizing ... a novel new DNA isolation kit at the Miami Winter Symposium 2020 , ... is a fast and easy-to-use kit designed for the efficient and unbiased isolation of ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/3/2020)... ... February 03, 2020 , ... ... Travel, Law Firm Travel, Technology Industry Travel and Biotech/Healthcare Industry Travel Indexes. , ... Index illustrates the following statistics:, Average airfare price ...
(Date:1/28/2020)... ... January 28, 2020 , ... Today, Salimetrics announced an ... new Salivary Total Human IgG Assay Kit exemplifies Salimetrics’ 20+ year ... researchers can extend the accuracy and ease of use of salivary bioscience into ...
(Date:1/24/2020)... RIDING, Va. (PRWEB) , ... January 24, 2020 ... ... and other innovations created by companies in biotechnology, diagnostics, therapeutics, laboratory and clinical ... lives of millions of people around the world. And as Slone Partners ...
(Date:1/22/2020)... (PRWEB) , ... January 21, 2020 , ... ... hiring of Darrell Taylor as Southern Midwest Region Industrial and Institutional (I&I) Account ... SporActiv™ product line. , Darrell brings over 30 years of sales ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: