skip to main content
OSTI.GOV title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Characterization of a cold-active bacterium isolated from the South Pole “Ice Tunnel”

Abstract

Abstract Extremely cold microbial habitats on Earth (those below -30 °C) are rare and have not been surveyed for microbes as extensively as environments in the 0 to -20 °C range. Using cryoprotected growth media incubated at -5 °C, we enriched a cold-active Pseudomonas species from -50 °C ice collected from a utility tunnel for wastewater pipes under Amundsen–Scott South Pole Station, Antarctica. The isolate, strain UC-1, is related to other cold-active Pseudomonas species, most notably P. psychrophila, and grew at -5 °C to +34–37 °C; growth of UC-1 at +3 °C was significantly faster than at +34 °C. Strain UC-1 synthesized a surface exopolymer and high levels of unsaturated fatty acids under cold growth conditions. A 16S rRNA gene diversity screen of the ice sample that yielded strain UC-1 revealed over 1200 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) distributed across eight major classes of Bacteria. Many of the OTUs were Clostridia and Bacteriodia and some of these were probably of wastewater origin. However, a significant fraction of the OTUs were Proteobacteria and Actinobacteria of likely environmental origin. Our results shed light on the lower temperature limits to life and the possible existence of functional microbial communities in ultra-cold environments.

Authors:
; ; ; ; ; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US), Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1406728
Report Number(s):
PNNL-SA-129520
Journal ID: ISSN 1431-0651; 49680; KP1704020
DOE Contract Number:  
AC05-76RL01830
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Extremeophiles; Journal Volume: 21; Journal Issue: 5
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
59 BASIC BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES; Antarctic microbiology; Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory

Citation Formats

Madigan, Michael T., Kempher, Megan L., Bender, Kelly S., Sullivan, Paul, Matthew Sattley, W., Dohnalkova, Alice C., and Joye, Samantha B. Characterization of a cold-active bacterium isolated from the South Pole “Ice Tunnel”. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1007/s00792-017-0950-2.
Madigan, Michael T., Kempher, Megan L., Bender, Kelly S., Sullivan, Paul, Matthew Sattley, W., Dohnalkova, Alice C., & Joye, Samantha B. Characterization of a cold-active bacterium isolated from the South Pole “Ice Tunnel”. United States. doi:10.1007/s00792-017-0950-2.
Madigan, Michael T., Kempher, Megan L., Bender, Kelly S., Sullivan, Paul, Matthew Sattley, W., Dohnalkova, Alice C., and Joye, Samantha B. Wed . "Characterization of a cold-active bacterium isolated from the South Pole “Ice Tunnel”". United States. doi:10.1007/s00792-017-0950-2.
@article{osti_1406728,
title = {Characterization of a cold-active bacterium isolated from the South Pole “Ice Tunnel”},
author = {Madigan, Michael T. and Kempher, Megan L. and Bender, Kelly S. and Sullivan, Paul and Matthew Sattley, W. and Dohnalkova, Alice C. and Joye, Samantha B.},
abstractNote = {Abstract Extremely cold microbial habitats on Earth (those below -30 °C) are rare and have not been surveyed for microbes as extensively as environments in the 0 to -20 °C range. Using cryoprotected growth media incubated at -5 °C, we enriched a cold-active Pseudomonas species from -50 °C ice collected from a utility tunnel for wastewater pipes under Amundsen–Scott South Pole Station, Antarctica. The isolate, strain UC-1, is related to other cold-active Pseudomonas species, most notably P. psychrophila, and grew at -5 °C to +34–37 °C; growth of UC-1 at +3 °C was significantly faster than at +34 °C. Strain UC-1 synthesized a surface exopolymer and high levels of unsaturated fatty acids under cold growth conditions. A 16S rRNA gene diversity screen of the ice sample that yielded strain UC-1 revealed over 1200 operational taxonomic units (OTUs) distributed across eight major classes of Bacteria. Many of the OTUs were Clostridia and Bacteriodia and some of these were probably of wastewater origin. However, a significant fraction of the OTUs were Proteobacteria and Actinobacteria of likely environmental origin. Our results shed light on the lower temperature limits to life and the possible existence of functional microbial communities in ultra-cold environments.},
doi = {10.1007/s00792-017-0950-2},
journal = {Extremeophiles},
number = 5,
volume = 21,
place = {United States},
year = {Wed Jul 05 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Wed Jul 05 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}