Send to

Choose Destination
FEMS Microbiol Ecol. 2007 Jul;61(1):16-25. Epub 2007 Apr 11.

Stress response of methanogenic archaea from Siberian permafrost compared with methanogens from nonpermafrost habitats.

Author information

Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research, Potsdam, Germany.


We examined the survival potential of methanogenic archaea exposed to different environmental stress conditions such as low temperature (down to -78.5 degrees C), high salinity (up to 6 M NaCl), starvation (up to 3 months), long-term freezing (up to 2 years), desiccation (up to 25 days) and oxygen exposure (up to 72 h). The experiments were conducted with methanogenic archaea from Siberian permafrost and were complemented by experiments on well-studied methanogens from nonpermafrost habitats. Our results indicate a high survival potential of a methanogenic archaeon from Siberian permafrost when exposed to the extreme conditions tested. In contrast, these stress conditions were lethal for methanogenic archaea isolated from nonpermafrost habitats. A better adaptation to stress was observed at a low temperature (4 degrees C) compared with a higher one (28 degrees C). Given the unique metabolism of methanogenic archaea in general and the long-term survival and high tolerance to extreme conditions of the methanogens investigated in this study, methanogenic archaea from permafrost should be considered as primary candidates for possible subsurface Martian life.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Silverchair Information Systems Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center