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Scientists Define New Limits of Microbial Life in Undersea Volcanoes

Posted Aug 06 2012 3:57pm

Photo of a hydrothermal vent field seen through the porthole of the submersible Alvin.

By some estimates, a third of Earth's organisms live in our planet's rocks and sediments, yet their lives are almost a complete mystery.

This week, the work of microbiologist James Holden of the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and colleagues shines a light into this dark world.

In the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), they report the first detailed data on methane-exhaling microbes that live deep in the cracks of hot undersea ...

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This is an NSF News item.

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