Scientists Pull Living Microbes, Possibly 100 Million Years Old, From Beneath the Sea
added 28.07.2020 23:21
sciencehabit writes: Microbes buried beneath the sea floor for more than 100 million years are still alive, a new study reveals.
The microbes are oxygen-loving species that somehow exist on what little of the gas diffuses from the ocean surface deep into the seabed.
The new work demonstrates "microbial life is very persistent, and often finds a way to survive," says Virginia Edgcomb, a microbial ecologist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution who was not involved in the work.
"If the surface of a particular planet does not look promising for life, it may be holding out in the subsurface," says Andreas Teske, a microbiologist at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, who was also not involved with the new study.
Researchers have known that life exists "under the floorboards" of the ocean for more than 15 years.