Mad Scientists revive 100 million-year-old microbes

this is The strange saga of scientists went into the deepest, deepest depths of the ocean, 250 feet down in the sediment, collecting an ancient germ, bringing them back to a laboratory, and reviving them. And you are about to think: In the already terrible year of 2020, why would they tempt fate in this way? Well, it turns out that not only is everything alright, but that everything is indeed very excellent, at least far from humanity in the deep seas of the world’s oceans.

The story begins 100 million years ago, which we humans now call the Pacific Ocean. The volcanic rock formed a hard “crypt” of seafloor, as geologists say. At this, sediment began to accumulate. But you cannot expect this kind of sediment.

More than ever in the world’s oceans, seafloor sediment is organic matter. Dead animals, from the largest plankton to the largest whale, die, drown, and make a duck that ejects scavengers and ejects them. The west coast of America is an excellent example: the incoming currents bring nutrients from deep, which feed all kinds of organisms near the surface, which in turn feed large animals, and on the food chain. In the end everything dies and flows downstream, where detritus becomes food for bottom-dwelling critters. The seas are full of life, they are so low. (For example, think of California’s hyper-productive Monterrey Bay.) Organic matter accumulates so rapidly on the seafloor, much of it is still buried under layers of organic material, before scavengers To reach.

Sediment core samples

Courtesy of IODP JRSO

Conversely, in the middle of the Pacific, there is definitely life, just very little of it. Accordingly, the water away from the coasts of Australia and New Zealand is the cleanest in the world. There is no runoff and very short life on the surface, so very little organic matter is sinking to the seafloor to form sediment. The sink is immediately uprooted by people living on a rare bottom like sea cucumbers.

Steven D’Hondt says, “This is the least searched large biome on Earth, because it covers 70 percent of the Earth’s surface,” Nature communication Describe the findings. “And we know very little about it.”

Dropping a 19,000-foot deep moat about 1,400 miles northeast of New Zealand, D’Hondt and his colleagues were on a mission to examine these ancient deep-sea sediments for life. Much of the seafloor can be volcanic ash that can be blown from the ground, as well as metallic bits from space. “A medial part of it is cosmic debris,” says D’Hundt. “If you pass through shallow soil with a magnet, you will eject the micrometer.”


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