Meteorite-loving microbes: a dancing orchestra after a voyage through time and space
by Tetyana Milojevic, University of Vienna, Department of Biophysical Chemistry, Vienna, Austria
This movie captures fluorescently labeled cells of the metal oxidizing extremophilic archaea Metallosphaera sedula growing on a stony meteorite NWA 1172 and exposing an unusual vigorous motility.
Fe-oxidizing microbe Metallosphaera sedula inhabits extreme environments, flourishes in hot acid and exhibites unusual heavy-metal resistance. This chemolithotrophic archaea thrives at 73°C and pH 2, using energy derived from the metal oxidation of sulfide ores. We have shown that thermoacidophile Metallosphaera sedula utilizes metals trapped within stony meteorites as the most preferential energy source, resulting in increased growth rates compared to the other energy substrates of terrestrial origin (sulfide ores, hydrogen, iron sulfate). A complex of genetic, biochemical and geochemical techniques has been applied to investigate this space stone-loving microbe.
Taken on 31
Submitted on 27 February 2015
1360 × 1024 px;
video/quicktime; 20.8 MB
Camera: Nikon microscope Jenoptik camera Nikon eclipse 50i microscope with ProgRes® MF cool camera
Credit: Tetyana Milojevic (distributed via imaggeo.egu.eu)
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