D. rad Bacteria: Candidate Astronauts

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#83655 by @ 23.01.2006 00:00 - nach oben -
D. rad Bacteria: Candidate Astronauts


Explanation:
These bacteria could survive on another planet.

In an Earth lab, Deinococcus radiodurans (D. rad) survive extreme levels of
radiation, extreme temperatures,
dehydration, and exposure to
genotoxic chemicals.

Amazingly, they even have the ability to repair their own

DNA,
usually with 48 hours.

Known as an extremophile,
bacteria such as

D. rad are of interest to
NASA
partly because they might be adaptable to help human
astronauts
survive on other worlds.

A recent
map of D. rad's

DNA might allow biologists to augment their
survival skills with the ability to produce medicine, clean water, and oxygen.

Already they have been
genetically engineered to

help clean up spills of toxic
mercury.

Likely one of the oldest surviving life forms,
D. rad was discovered by accident in the 1950s when scientists investigating
food preservation
techniques could not easily kill it.

Pictured above,
Deinococcus radiodurans grow quietly
in a dish.




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