How deep-sea bacteria thrive under pressure

Date: March 26, 2021

Source: Nature

Scientists have uncovered a cellular process that enables deep-sea bacteria to survive the high pressures found at the bottom of the ocean.

Yu-Zhong Zhang at Shandong University in Qingdao, China, and his colleagues grew a deep-sea strain, called D25T, of the bacterium Myroides profundi in the laboratory with and without trimethylamine, a nitrogen-containing compound that is common in the ocean. The researchers measured how fast the bacteria grew at atmospheric pressure and at pressures of 20 and 40 megapascals, which are similar to those encountered 2 and 4 kilometres below the sea surface.

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