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Old 08-16-2003, 11:59 AM   #1
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Default New extremophile discovered

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/3144397.stm


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An organism has been discovered that can thrive at a record-breaking 121 Celsius.

The single-celled microbe grows at higher temperatures than any other known lifeform, according to scientists in the United States.

Strain 121, as it is known, was extracted from water gushing from super-hot springs at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean.

These hydothermal vents, warmed by molten rock deep within the Earth's crust, teem with strange lifeforms, such as tubeworms and huge clams.

The microbe, about a hundred times smaller than a grain of sand, belongs to an ancient group of bacteria-like organisms known as archae.

Even autoclaving - the process used to sterilise medical instruments - cannot destroy it.
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Old 08-16-2003, 12:48 PM   #2
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121 Celsius? Impressive, even for chemosynthesizing bacteria. It's a good thing this was found recently; if it were discovered last year, it would've been yet another date and species name to memorize for Academic Decathlon!
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