September 23, 2012 22:29
Scientists have managed to revive life, which in ancient times was frozen in glaciers Atlantic. The experiment had been returned to the life-celled organisms. Their species has not been determined.
According to Kay Baydla, assistant professor of marine biology at Rutgers University (New Jersey), the study is of the utmost importance. The fact is that until now, scientists did not know whether or not frozen in the ice of ancient organisms and their DNA, in principle, be brought back to life, and how long after freezing cells retain vitality.
Together with Professor Paul Falkovski, Dave Merchantom and other doctor Baydl frees five samples of ice from the Antarctic Beacon Valley — supposedly the oldest ice on Earth. Its age ranges from 100,000 to 8 million years. The main aim of the exercise was to find microorganisms in samples preserved.
The "young" samples growth was very fast. Bacteria from stotysyacheletnego ice placed in warm culture medium, came to life and grew "by leaps and bounds." Professionals to easily restore microorganisms and divided into separate colonies. The number of microorganisms was doubling every couple of days.
New types of bacteria were found unfrozen. "All of this land is already seen" — said Dr. Baydl. And Paul Falkovski suggests that most of the bacteria got into the Antarctic from African deserts: wind-borne bacteria linger on the surface of the glacier and then freezes into ice. It is possible that some of them are inside a tiny bubble of water and thus can maintain your metabolism.
In contrast to the young, said Dr. Baydl, signs of life in bacteria that have carried out in the ice about eight million years, have been much weaker. Microorganisms from the old ice samples grew very slowly, doubling their number only every 70 days.
DNA of the bacteria consisted of 210 nucleotides (for comparison: the average normal bacteria DNA has about three million nucleotides).
Everything else, even the researchers were unable to identify them because their DNA is damaged by the effects of cosmic radiation on the ice, at the poles is much stronger than anywhere else on Earth.
This finding undermines the hypothesis that icy comet that fell to Earth could to place her genetic material from outside the solar system.
Thus, the study questions the idea of panspermia — the dissemination of life in space by transferring genetic material.
"In the case of preservation of microbes and their genes in icy comets hit the genetic material from one planet to another would have been possible," — wrote. However, given the extremely high levels of cosmic radiation, the results suggest highly unlikely that life on Earth has been recorded due to the ingress of genetic material from other "solar system".
According to Dr. Baydla, the opening has been linked to the search for traces of life on Mars, "Through many years of careful study of the geology and formation of debris-covered glaciers of the Transantarctic Mountains in Antarctica Dave Merchant and other scientists have found similarities to that observed in the underground glaciers on Mars. So now is the best terrestrial analog of what we see on Mars. "
Data on DNA Antarctic bacteria are also a valuable information, as in the process of ice melting much of the ancient DNA is washed off in the ocean and probably assimilated marine microorganisms: bacteria can incorporate foreign DNA.
"I think people should not worry about going back to the ancient nature of the virus," — Dr. Falkovski calms. But on what he bases his strange assertion is, not clear.