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Trends Microbiol. 2008 Mar;16(3):92-4. doi: 10.1016/j.tim.2008.01.002.

Intact DNA in ancient permafrost.

Author information

1
Department of Biology, Northeastern University, Boston, MA 02115, USA. k.lewis@neu.edu

Abstract

Contrary to the generally held notions about microbial survival, the recently published paper by Johnson et al., 'Ancient bacteria show evidence of DNA repair', presents evidence suggesting that non-spore-forming bacteria in ancient samples are apparently alive, as judged by intact DNA, and fare better than spores. The data presented in this work raise intriguing questions about the nature of bacteria in many of the ancient samples reported to date: are they spores, persisters, sessile vegetative cells or do they make up a slow-growing population?

PMID:
18291656
DOI:
10.1016/j.tim.2008.01.002
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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