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Latest Extremophiles Stories

Microbial Life In Undersea Volcanoes Provide Exciting New Research Opportunities
2012-08-07 13:38:43

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Although some have estimated a third of the Earth's biomass lives in our planet's rocks and sediments, little is known about these hard to reach organisms. A new report published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), with possibly wide reaching implications, looks to study one group of methane-producing microbes that live deep in the cracks of hot undersea volcanoes. Because of the alien nature of these...

Microbes Capable of Surviving Harsh, Mars-Like Conditions Discovered
2012-06-09 05:58:05

Soil samples obtained from South American volcanoes have revealed a smattering of different microbe types that have somehow managed to survive in extreme conditions, the University of Colorado-Boulder (CU-Boulder) announced in a June 8 press release. According to the university, the scientists behind the research discovered bacteria, fungi, and a different type of simple organism known as archaea living in conditions similar to Mars -- a landscape which they dub "some of the most...

2012-04-17 10:27:01

Many manufacturing processes rely on microorganisms to perform tricky chemical transformations or make substances from simple starting materials. The authors of a study appearing in mBio®, the online open-access journal of the American Society for Microbiology, on April 17 have found a way to control a heat-loving microbe with a temperature switch: it makes a product at low temperatures but not at high temperatures. The innovation could make it easier to use microorganisms as miniature...

2012-03-08 00:57:47

Drought events are largely unknown in Earth's history, because reconstruction of ancient hydrological conditions remains difficult due to lack of proxy. New GEOLOGY research supported by China´s NNSF and MS&T uses a microbial lipid proxy of highly alkaline conditions to identify enhanced aridity in Miocene sediments on the Tibetan Plateau. This enhanced aridity is associated with significant uplift of the Tibetan Plateau nine million years ago. According to the study's lead...

Image 1 - Microbial Oasis Found Beneath Atacama Desert, Lessons For Mars
2012-02-17 04:13:29

Two meters below the surface of the Atacama Desert there is an 'oasis' of microorganisms. Researchers from the Center of Astrobiology (Spain) and the Catholic University of the North in Chile have found it in hypersaline substrates thanks to SOLID, a detector for signs of life which could be used in environments similar to subsoil on Mars. Life is bustling under the driest desert on Earth. A Spanish-Chilean team of scientists have found bacteria and archaea (primitive microorganisms)...

Turning Up The Heat On Biomass Pretreatment Processes
2011-10-03 04:43:00

The nation's Renewable Fuels Standard calls for annual production of 36 billion gallons of biofuel by 2022. One of the biggest hurdles to achieving this goal lies in optimizing the multistep process involved in breaking down plant biomass and then converting it into fermentable sugars that can be refined into fuel for our transportation needs. To overcome this challenge, the U.S. Department of Energy supports several projects focused on identifying enzymes from fungi and microbes such as...

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2011-09-24 08:44:23

The Natural History Museum in London said on Friday that it is seeking the public's advice in naming a new species of sea-dwelling worm. The unnamed worms are known as annelids and the species spends its time about 6,500 feet below the surface of the sea in Antarctic. "Our goal is to show that taxonomy, the scientific discipline of naming new species, is interesting, fun and crucial to the advancement of science," zoologist at the National History Museum, Adrian Glover, said in a press...

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2011-07-06 07:53:34

Prospecting for new and unusual cellulose-digesting enzymes for biofuels production By Robert Sanders, UC Berkeley Bioprospectors from the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Maryland School of Medicine have found a microbe in a Nevada hot spring that happily eats plant material "“ cellulose "“ at temperatures near the boiling point of water. In fact, the microbe's cellulose-digesting enzyme, called a cellulase, is most active at a record 109 degrees Celsius...

2011-06-30 17:22:06

In order to realize the full potential of advanced biofuels that are derived from non-food sources of lignocellulosic biomass"”e.g., agricultural, forestry, and municipal waste, and crops such as poplar, switchgrass and miscanthus"”new technologies that can efficiently and cost-effectively break down this biomass into simple sugars are required. Existing biomass pretreatment technologies are typically derived from the pulp and paper industry and rely on dilute acids and bases to...

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2011-05-18 07:15:00

A microscopic organism called a tardigrade became the first animal to survive exposure to space when, in 2007, it was launched aboard the European Space Agency's (ESA) Foton-M3 mission, in an experiment to test their ability to survive in the oxygen-deprived space vacuum, reports BBC News. The little critter prevailed over the sub-zero temperatures and unrelenting solar winds as well as the lack of oxygen. Tardigrades are more commonly known by their non-scientific name, the water bear....


Latest Extremophiles Reference Libraries

Paralvinella sulfincola
2014-01-12 00:00:00

Paralvinella sulfincola is a species of worm in the Alvinellidae family. It lives among undersea hot-water vents, thriving in the hottest of waters, at temperatures that would kill most animals. This characteristic makes it an extremophile or hyperthermophile. Having the unique ability to withstand extremely hot water from hydrothermal openings enables this stalk-like worm to feed on bacteria that other animals cannot reach. It is difficult to know exactly what temperatures this species...

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Word of the Day
lunula
  • A small crescent-shaped structure or marking, especially the white area at the base of a fingernail that resembles a half-moon.
This word is a diminutive of the Latin 'luna,' moon.
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