Day: September 7, 2016

Extremophiles

Extremophiles

Extremophiles

09/07/16

“Are there organisms that can thrive in the most hazardous of environments?”

 

The extreme has always fascinated humankind. Whether it be extreme sports or extreme beliefs, our brains are wired to love it when the  pre-conceived safety boundaries are pushed beyond recognition. Extreme environments are no exception, with many captivated by the almost alien-like structure of locations such as the bottom of the ocean. Now, in these most extraordinary of places, is it possible for something such as life to exist? Believe it or not, there in fact are. Extremophiles are life-forms that are adapted to exist within the most dangerous of environments, such as hydrothermal vents. In fact, these organisms can even survive in locations with no oxygen! Extremophiles are able to accomplish these feats with the use of a special enzyme called extremozymes. Examples of extremophiles include giant tube worms, which live on the bottom of the pacific ocean floor and withstand high levels of hydrogen sulfide, and water bears, half a millimeter creatures which can survive for 120 years with no food or water and withstand pressure 6 times what is found in the oceans, as well survive in temperatures just above absolute zero.  

 

Now, to take this idea a step further, if there are numerous creatures out there that can survive in alien-like conditions, could there be creatures that survive on alien worlds? Just think about it