Microbes from Utah could survive on Mars

20.05.2004

20.05.2004


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Dr. Bonnie Baxter (Bonnie Baxter) from Westminster College in Salt Lake City (Westminster College, Salt Lake City) started the first comprehensive analysis of microbes in the famous Great Salt Lake of Utah.

So far, only a few of these types of germs more or less studied and put in catalogs.

These microbes, extremophiles live in environments where other organisms would not survive.

The salinity of the water here is 30% — ten times higher than that of the sea. Plus heat and sun.

Microbes use chemical "pump" running on solar energy to keep a low (compared with medium) level of internal salt concentration.

To give effect to this mechanism, the microbes need to live near the surface, forcing them to stay all day in the sun damaging ultraviolet light.

Just this one more secret local microbes.

Pink Lake in part to carotenoid pigments that produce a local micro-organisms.

These pigments shield their DNA from damage by acting as a built-in sunscreen.

By studying these organisms, people might come up with something similar for yourself, says the researcher.

But the most interesting — is unusually high salinity and hard ultraviolet — conditions that are identical to those observed on Mars in the past geological epochs.

Microbes from Utah could very good health on the Red Planet.

By the way, the lake has another secret.

When the researchers compared the DNA of some new species to the gene bank in order to understand whether the studied genes resemble those of known organisms, usually in three cases out of four is something like that.

But when this is done with the microbes from the Great Salt Lake — the majority of genes are not similar to that on Earth.

19.05.2004

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