Japanese scientists say they have revived microbes that were in a dormant state for more than 100 million years. The experiment sheds new light on the place on Earth everyday living can be discovered - and just how resilient it can be. The surprise came when, even in older sediments, the researchers were able to revive nearly all the microbial community original . Researchers proved that these microbes had survived by showing they can grow and divide in laboratory conditions, indicating that rather these were not just fossilized remains of life.
"In the oldest sediment we've drilled, with the least amount of food, there are still living organisms, and they can wake up, grow and multiply", he said.
The South Pacific Gyre is an ocean current which includes the oceanic pole of inaccessibility, the area farthest from any continents and productive ocean regions.
The area has little food, but it does harbor a lot of oxygen deep beneath the subseafloor.More news: Toronto and Peel moving into Stage 3 Friday
The samples were obtained in 2010, when an expedition of the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) recovered sedimentary sequences from the abyssal plain of the South Pacific Giro.
Within the sediment, scientists found marine microbes: tiny, single-celled microorganisms that make up the overwhelming majority of the total mass of living creatures in the ocean. The authors report that if sediment accumulates at a rate of no more than three to six feet every 1 million years, it can remain oxygenated enough to support bacteria.
The researchers wanted to know if life can exist in such a nutrient-poor environment.
Microbes gathered from the seafloor, which is regarded as around 101.5 million years old, were revived in a lab. They gave the ancient samples carbon and nitrogen substrates, to test no matter whether they had been cable of feeding and dividing into more cells.More news: Animal Crossing New Horizons - How to Get King Tut Mask
Over a period of 68 days, the vast majority of the almost 7,000 cells rapidly responded to the new conditions, multiplying by four orders of magnitude - even in the oldest samples. Its physical appearance, having said that, belies a flourishing bacterial ecosystem that could have as a great deal as 45% of the world's biomass of microbes.
Microbes are amongst the earth's most basic organisms, and some can reside in severe environments where more industrialized life kinds cannot make it through.
There was a previous study of bacterial spores that were supposedly from 250-million-year-old salt crystal in the Permian Salado Formation in New Mexico, but not all experts agreed these were really from back then.More news: Lou Williams shares surprising reason why he likes Magic City strip club
Through further experiments, researchers now hope to determine how the microbes were able to persist for millions of years.