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Methanogenic Archaea from Siberian Permafrost as Prime Candidates for Life on Mars

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Citation:
Morozova, D. and Wagner, D. (2006): Methanogenic Archaea from Siberian Permafrost as Prime Candidates for Life on Mars , DFG Workshop, May 4-5, Cologne, Germany. .
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Abstract:

Since ESA mission Mars Express determined water on Mars, fundamental requirement for life, and presence of CH4 in the Martian atmosphere, which could be originated only from active volcanism or from biological sources, it is obviously that microbial life could still exist on Mars, for example in form of subsurface lithoautotrophic ecosystems, which are also exist in permafrost regions on Earth. The methanogenic archaea in pure cultures as well as in their natural environment of Siberian permafrost represent high survival potential under extreme conditions of high salinity, radiation dose up to 5000 Jm-2, desiccation for more than 3 weeks), extremely low temperatures of - 80°C and Mars simulation for 22 days. Investigation of the survival potential of these high specialized organisms can provide a unique insight to explore the life on the red planet.

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