Utah Microbes May Have Come From Mars

Young People's Trust for the Environment

This article reports that halophiles of the Great Salt Lake produce pigments that shield their DNA from sun damage and enzymes that allow them to embrace hypersaline environments. The majority of their genes are novel and they are unlike anything else on Earth. Therefore, many parallels are being drawn between locations like this and Meridiani Planum on Mars. The article also introduces potential biotechnological uses of halophiles.

Subject: Biology:Ecology:Symbiotic Relations:Mutualism, Biology:Astrobiology, Ecology:Metabolism, Biology:Microbiology
Resource Type: Scientific Resources:Overview/Reference Work
Grade Level: General Public, High School (9-12), Middle (6-8), Intermediate (3-5)
Extreme Environments: Hypersaline
Topics: Biosphere:Ecology:Habitats:Freshwater, Biosphere:Astrobiology, Microbiology, Ecology:Abiotic Relations