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Life Sciences - Microbiology | Polyextremophiles - Life Under Multiple Forms of Stress

Polyextremophiles

Life Under Multiple Forms of Stress

Seckbach, Joseph, Oren, Aharon, Stan-Lotter, Helga (Eds.)

2013, XXX, 634 p. 153 illus., 79 illus. in color.

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  • Provides updated information and comprehensive overview about life at the edge in extreme environments
  • Presents an in-depth review on the limits of life under multiple forms of stress
  • Discussion on the molecular mechanisms that enable microorganisms to thrive under extreme conditions of temperature, pH, Salinity and combinations of these factors
Many Microorganisms and some macro-organisms can live under extreme conditions. For example, high and low temperature, acidic and alkaline conditions, high salt areas, high pressure, toxic compounds, high level of ionizing radiation, anoxia and absence of light, etc. Many organisms inhabit environments characterized by more than one form of stress (Polyextremophiles). Among them are those who live in hypersaline and alkaline, hot and acidic, cold/hot and high hydrostatic pressure, etc. Polyextremophiles found in desert regions have to cope with intense UV irradiation and desiccation, high as well as low temperatures, and low availability of water and nutrients. The chapters of this book provide an updated picture of our current understanding of the distribution of polyextremophilic microorganisms in nature and about the special physiological and biochemical properties that enable them to withstand multiple environmental extremes. It provides descriptions of unusual and less explored ecosystems such as Earth's cryosphere, marine hypersaline deeps, hot and cold desert environments, hot springs with elevated temperature and low or high pH. This book provides novel results of application to polyextremophiles research ranging from nanotechnology to synthetic biology to the origin of life and beyond. The topics of this volume are of importance not only for the understanding of the limits of life on Earth, but also for Astrobiology with the exploration of the possibility of life ‘as we know it’ to be present on other extraterrestrial bodies in the Universe.

Content Level » Upper undergraduate

Keywords » Astrobiology - Biodiversity - Habitats - Microbial ecology - Polyextremophiles

Related subjects » Astrobiology - Cell Biology - Microbiology

Table of contents 

PART 1: OPENING CHAPTERS
Introduction; J. Seckbach et al.
Foreword; R.W. Castenholz
Preface; K. Horikoshi
List of Authors and Their Addresses
PART 2: GENERAL ASPECTS
Polyextremophiles and the Constraints for Terrestrial Habitability; M.C. Capece et al.
Life on the Edge and Astrobiology: Who Is Who in the Polyextremophiles World; J. Seckbach
The Dynamic Genomes of Acidophiles; F. J. López de Saro et al.
PART 3: HALOPHILES
Two Centuries of Microbiological Research in the Wadi Natrun, Egypt: A Model System for the Study of the Ecology, Physiology, and Taxonomy of Haloalkaliphilic Microorganisms; A. Oren
Adaptation  in Haloalkaliphiles and Natronophilic Bacteria; H.L. Banciu  and D.Y. Sorokin
A Random Biogeochemical Walk into Three Soda Lakes of the Western USA: With an Introduction to a Few of their Microbial Denizens; R.S. Oremland
Halophilic, Acidophilic, and Haloacidophilic Prokaryotes; H. Minegishi
Life in Magnesium- and Calcium-Rich Hypersaline Environments: Salt Stress by Chaotropic Ions; A. Oren
Survival Strategies of Halophilic Oligotrophic and Desiccation Resistant Prokaryotes; H. Stan-Lotter and S. Fendrihan
Radiation Resistance in Extremophiles: Fending Off Multiple Attacks; K.M. Webb and J. DiRuggiero
PART 4: THERMOPHILES
Thermoalkaliphilic Microbes; V. Kumar and T. Satyanarayana
Acido- and Thermophilic Microorganisms, Their Features and Identification of Novel Enzymes or Pathways; Y. Kawarabayasi
Microbial Diversity in Acidic High Temperature Steam Vents; R.L. Weiss Bizzoco and  S.T. Kelley
PART 5: PSYCHROPHILES
Left Out in the Cold: Life in Cryoenvironments; J. Goordial et al.
Microbial Diversity and Enzymes in Ikaite Columns; A Cold and Alkaline Environment in Greenland; J.K. Vester et al.
Microbial Communities Thriving in Various Ice Ecosystems; B. Sattler and B. Post
Snow Algae. Adaptation Strategies to Survive on Snow and Ice; T. Leya
Adaptation of Antarctic Freshwater Green Algae to the Extreme Environments; H. Hu
PART 6: PRESSURE
Deep Sub-Surface Oil Reservoirs as Poly-Extreme Habitats for Microbial Life. A Current Review; A. Wentzel et al.
Expanding Limits for Life to a New Dimension: Microbial Growth at Hypergravity; S. Deguchi  and K. Horikoshi
PART 7: OXYGEN RELATIONSHIPS
Microbial Eukaryotes in Marine Oxygen Minimum Zones; W.D. Orsi and V.P. Edgcomb
Deep Hypersaline Anoxic Basins as Model Systems for Environmental Selection of Microbial Plankton; A. Stock et al.
Microbial Eukaryotes in Hypersaline Anoxic Deep Sea Basins; V.P. Edgcomb and W.D. Orsi
Life at High Salt and Low Oxygen: How Do the Halobacteriaceae Cope with Low Oxygen Concentrations in their Environment?; A. Oren
PART 8: SELECTED ORGANISMS
Niches and Adaptations of Polyextremotolerant Black Fungi; M. Grube et al.
Polyextremophilic Photoautotrophic Eukaryotic Algae; W. Reisser
Extremophilic Magnetotactic Bacteria; C.T. Lefèvre and D. A. Bazylinski
Multicellular Extremophiles – The Case of the Tardigrades; D. Schulze-Makuch and J. Seckbach
PART 9: FINAL COMMENTS
Polyextremophiles - Summary and Conclusions; J. Chela Flores
Erratum
Organism Index
Subject Index
Author Index

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