Frozen Pleistocene Bacteria Revived By NASA

February 26th, 2005 | researchmaterial

A bacterium that sat dormant in a frozen pond in Alaska for 32,000 years has been revived by NASA scientists.

Once scientists thawed the ice, the previously undiscovered bacteria started swimming around on the microscope slide. The researchers say it is the first new species of microbe found alive in ancient ice. Now named Carnobacterium pleistocenium, it is thought to have lived in the Pleistocene epoch, a time when woolly mammoths still roamed the Earth.

NASA astrobiologist Richard Hoover, who led the team, said the find bolsters the case for finding life elsewhere in the universe, particularly given this week’s news, broken by New Scientist, of frozen lakes just beneath the surface of equatorial Mars…


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