Send to

Choose Destination
Cryobiology. 2000 Dec;41(4):257-79.

Ice nucleation and antinucleation in nature.

Author information

Laboratory of Ecophysiology and Toxicology, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, 7491 Trondheim, Norway.


Plants and ectothermic animals use a variety of substances and mechanisms to survive exposure to subfreezing temperatures. Proteinaceous ice nucleators trigger freezing at high subzero temperatures, either to provide cold protection from released heat of fusion or to establish a protective extracellular freezing in freeze-tolerant species. Freeze-avoiding species increase their supercooling potential by removing ice nucleators and accumulating polyols. Terrestrial invertebrates and polar marine fish stabilize their supercooled state by means of noncolligatively acting antifreeze proteins. Some organisms also depress their body fluid melting point to ambient temperature by evaporation and/or solute accumulation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center