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Sunday, 10 July 2016

Scientists isolate microbial partnership at Yellowstone

Cistern Spring in Yellowstone National Park is home to the elusive archaeon Nanopusillus acidilobi. Credit: ORNL / Source: Phys.org
There have been many bacterial communities thriving in extreme conditions. What about microbial partnership to dwell together? A new research published in Nature communications provides a valuable model of study of microbial partnership thriving in acidic hot springs of Yellowstone National park.

Mircea Podar of ORNL’s Biosciences division led a team of researchers that isolated 100-300billionths of size archaeon Nanopusillus acidilobi which interacts with another archeaon Acidilobus.

"This work demonstrates how organisms find ways to adapt and interact with specific organisms in a symbiotic or parasitic way to survive in hostile environments," Podar said. "By integrating knowledge from genomics, proteomics and classical microbiology, we can culture wild organisms and sometimes manipulate them for practical applications that range from energy production to medicine."

The Archaea domain consists of single celled organisms like that of bacteria have no membrane bound nucleus or organelles. Nanopusillus has developed a mechanism to intake biosynthetic molecules from the host cell via cell to cell contact.

This recent accomplishment is much satisfying for Podar as it holds the combination of diligence and chance that took several years.

"We discovered and cultured a novel organism from a group of organisms that people have been trying to get for over a decade, and in part that was due to prior genomic data we acquired from those organisms in Yellowstone," Podar said, adding that the microbial system "abounds in unique, remarkable physiological and genomic features."

Further read: Nature communications

Source: Phys dot org


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