PDA

View Full Version : Discussion: Extreme Life in Yellowstone Gives ...



Fraser
2005-Apr-21, 04:26 PM
SUMMARY: Researchers from the University of Colorado at Boulder have uncovered a group of bacteria living in an extreme environment in Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. The hardy microbes were discovered living inside rocks near geothermal vents, and are regularly subjected to an acidic environment with high levels of metals and silicates and very high temperatures. These microbes can end up as fossils, so scientists can see how they've changed over time, and they can learn additional signs to look for life on Mars.

View full article (http://www.universetoday.com/am/publish/extreme_life_yellowstone.html)

What do you think about this story? Post your comments below.

Greg
2005-Apr-21, 08:28 PM
With regards to what environemts microbes can survive in, nothing surprises me anymore. Given enough transition time for adaptation, microbes on our planet will be able to adapt to just about any kind of environment. The real question is whether or not Mars was ever stable enough for long enough with a life-sustaining environment for the first microbes to form. Once that happened, thre would be no doubt that some form of that life survives today. Another buringin question I would have is whether or not microbes buried in ejection strata from Earth that fell onto Mars would have a chance to flourish there. In my mind if the environment on Mars was hospitabel enough and the ejecta arrived ath the right time, then it would be more likely to find microbes there that are distant cousing to the ones here on Earth.

TuTone
2005-Apr-21, 11:41 PM
Wouldn't it be amazing if there was nothing on planet Mars at all or even in our solar system, no microbes or anything. Just us & all this other life on planet Earth.....Hmmm :mellow:

sam_lelime
2005-Apr-22, 02:01 AM
I think there is life on mars.. also suspect that there is almost proof... but we both know how fragile scientific reputation, is
many theorists think that life originated on mars or in space cause the ultra violate radiation needed to form a left hand proteins is insufficient on earth. I know the amount of ultraviolet rays changes with the earths atmospheric conditions,, so it could have been on earth all a along.
.. however there is chance that life started on mars and diversified and grew on earth... :huh:

baselle
2005-Apr-22, 03:28 AM
The very cool thing about this work is not that life exists in extreme places like Yellowstone hot springs. That's been known for years, heck the critter whose heat-resistant DNA polymerase made PCR possible was discovered in a hot spring over 25 years ago.

Its that an entire, extreme ecosystem of microbes exists which Pace's lab can characterize by "grinding and finding" DNA sequences, a straightforward technique. I wonder if they can do this w/RNA?

The real fun begins when they try this technique with other extreme ecosystems - hot smokers, acid caves, high pressure rock, Chilean desert, and compare them to Yellowstone. You hope for different ecosystem profiles because if we finally try this on Mars proper we have a better shot of understanding what we find.

I just love how the "life as we know it" boundaries are ever expanding.

om@umr.edu
2005-Apr-23, 12:48 PM
Originally posted by sam_lelime@Apr 22 2005, 02:01 AM
I think there is life on mars.. also suspect that there is almost proof... but we both know how fragile scientific reputation, is
many theorists think that life originated on mars or in space cause the ultra violate radiation needed to form a left hand proteins is insufficient on earth. I know the amount of ultraviolet rays changes with the earths atmospheric conditions,, so it could have been on earth all a along.
.. however there is chance that life started on mars and diversified and grew on earth... :huh:
Hi, Sam.

I agree that there may be, or once have been, life on Mars.

The separation of d-amino acids from l-amino acids apparently occurred in many parts on the early solar system, including the material that makes up the Murchison meteorite. John Cronin reported that finding in Science many years ago, probably in the mid-1990s.

He argued, and I agree, that the separation was likely caused by circular polarized light coming from a neutron star in the area.

With kind regards,

Oliver
http://www.umr.edu/~om

Nick4
2005-Apr-24, 02:55 AM
This is a huge step, we now know that thes microbes live it an environment as similer to that on mars and the moon for that matter.