Real world native biocrusts: Microbial metabolism

Arid lands, which cover some 40 percent of the Earth's terrestrial surface, are too dry to sustain much in the way of vegetation. But far from being barren, they are home to diverse communities of microorganisms—including ...

Monitoring microbes to keep Marsonauts healthy

To guarantee a safe environment for astronauts on long-duration space missions such as a journey to Mars, it is important to monitor how microorganisms such as bacteria adapt to the confined conditions onboard spacecraft, ...

Explosion in number of known life forms

A remarkable effort from University of Queensland researchers has helped increase the number of known genomes by almost 10 per cent.

Uncovering hidden microbial lineages from hot springs

Although global microbial populations are orders of magnitude larger than nearly any other population in, on or around the planet, only a fraction has been identified thus far. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is seeking ...

Dirty, crusty meals fit for (long-dormant) microbes

In deserts and other arid lands, microbes often form very thin top layers on soil known as biocrusts, which behave a bit like Rip Van Winkle. He removed himself from a stressful environment by sleeping for decades, and awoke ...

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