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Galaxy Forum Kansas 2011_ad astra 2001

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Galaxy Forum Kansas 2011_ad astra 2001

  1. 1. Extreme Living:Finding Salty Microbes on Mars<br />Mark A. Schneegurt<br />Department of Biological Sciences, Wichita State University, Wichita, Kansas<br />
  2. 2. Search for Life on Mars<br />
  3. 3.
  4. 4.
  5. 5.
  6. 6. Life on Mars is most likely microbial<br />
  7. 7. Spacecraft Assembly Building<br />
  8. 8.
  9. 9.
  10. 10. Water Ice Near Phoenix Lander<br />
  11. 11. Phoenix Lander Struts<br />
  12. 12. Surface Temperatures on Mars<br />
  13. 13. Liquid Water on Mars<br />
  14. 14. Salty Martian Soils<br />
  15. 15.
  16. 16. Model of Pore Water Salinities in Martian Soils<br />
  17. 17.
  18. 18.
  19. 19.
  20. 20. Epsom Downs<br />
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  22. 22.
  23. 23. Thalassohaline Waters<br />Often Coastal<br />Similar Ions as Seawater<br />Rich in Na+ Salts<br />Great Salt Lake, Solar Lake<br />
  24. 24. Athalassohaline Waters<br />Not of Marine Origin<br />Different Major Ions<br />Often Rich in K+<br />Rich in Carbonates<br />And Alkaline<br />Dead Sea, Mono Lake<br />
  25. 25. Salt Plains National Wildlife Refuge<br />Alfalfa County, Oklahoma <br />65 km2<br />Surface evaporite:<br />Na and K salts<br />Selenite (CaSO4) crystals<br />Deposited by <br /> Artesian Permian brine<br />Sparse vegetation<br />
  26. 26. Great Salt Plains of Oklahoma<br />
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  28. 28.
  29. 29.
  30. 30. Can GSP Bacteria Grow at 2 M Epsomite?<br />(also find 105 per gram soil in oligohaline turf)<br />
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  33. 33. Hot Lake, WA<br />
  34. 34. Hot Lake, WA<br />
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  39. 39. Initial Questions<br />Is there anything alive in these lakes? Can we culture them in the laboratory?<br />What kinds of microbes are present? Are these salinotolerant relatives of common soil or aquatic microbes? Or are they from genera specific to hypersaline environments?<br />Are the isolates halotolerant or halophilic? Are they osmotolerant or osmophilic? Are they epsotolerant or epsophilic? Is there even such a characteristic as epsophilic?<br />What are their basic biochemical and physiological characteristics?<br />
  40. 40. Methods<br /><ul><li>Samples were collected from both the water in the lake and from the soil in the margins surrounding it.
  41. 41. Using rich artificial seawater supplemented with 10% or 2 M MgSO4 or 10% NaCl at RT or 37 deg C</li></ul>North<br /><ul><li>Fresh samples were collected from Hot Lake, near Oroville, WA from a total of seven sites in the area.</li></li></ul><li>Epsotolerance of Hot Lake Isolates<br />100 isolates tested<br />Broad Epsotolerance<br />2 M = 50%<br />More tolerant than GSP isolates<br />
  42. 42. Halotolerance of Hot Lake Isolates<br />100 Isolates tested<br />2 M = 10%<br />Substantial halotolerance<br />But not as broad as epsotolerance<br />And not as tolerant as GSP isolates<br />
  43. 43. Gram-negative bacteria<br />Halomonas<br />Idiomarina<br />Legionella<br />Lysobacter<br />Acidovorax<br />Erythrobacter<br />
  44. 44. Low G+C Gram-positive bacteria<br />Bacillus<br />Virgibacillus<br />Planococcus<br />Exiguobacterium<br />Marinococcus<br />Lactococcus<br />
  45. 45. High G+C Gram-positive bacteria<br />Actinomycetes<br />Actinobacterium<br />Nocardiopsis<br />Corynebacterium<br />Nesterenkonia<br />Kocuria<br />
  46. 46. delta-Proteobacteria<br />Sulfur metabolisms<br />Chloroflexi<br />
  47. 47. Basque Lake, BC<br />
  48. 48. Basque Lake, BC<br />
  49. 49.
  50. 50.
  51. 51. Europa<br />
  52. 52. Initial Questions with Answers<br />Is there anything alive in these lakes? Can we culture them in the laboratory?<br />Yes. Seemingly diverse. Culturable aerobes, anaerobes, and phototrophs.<br />What kinds of microbes are present? Are these salinotolerant relatives of common soil or aquatic microbes? Or are they from genera specific to hypersaline environments?<br />Seem to be hypersaline genera.<br />Are the isolates halotolerant or halophilic? Are they osmotolerant or osmophilic? Are they epsotolerant or epsophilic? Is there even such a characteristic as epsophilic?<br />So far, halotolerant. Perhaps some halophilic. Broadly epsotolerant. Maybe a few epsophilic.<br />What are their basic biochemical and physiological characteristics?<br />Mixture of G+ and G-. Limited substrates and fermentation.<br />
  53. 53. NSF GK-12 Program<br />Graduate Teaching Fellows in K-12 Education<br />Began in 1999 in Education Directorate<br />More than $50M per year<br />Over 150 active programs nationwide<br />Places STEM graduate students in classrooms<br />Stipends: $30K per year tax-free + $10.5K in education expenses<br />Teacher stipends up to $4.5K per year<br />Includes travel funds, materials, faculty salary, admin support<br />Goals: better future faculty members, more STEM majors<br />GK-12 fellows “bring their research into the classroom”<br />Host university “culture change”<br />Globalization through international connections<br />
  54. 54. Northeast Magnet Research Club<br /> Fifteen juniors at NEM are involved in the after-school research club program. The club meets twice a week with several active projects under way. <br />
  55. 55. Northwest High School Restriction Enzyme Digest Assay<br />
  56. 56. Winter workshop with teacher fellows<br />
  57. 57. Molecular Biology<br />Activities for the <br />Classroom<br />http://webs.wichita.edu/mschneegurt/gk12web/classroom/classroom.html<br />
  58. 58. Safe Inexpensive Microbiology<br />with Household Materials<br />Schneegurt, M. A., A. N. Wedel, and E. W. Pokorski (2004) Safe, low-cost, salty microbiology for the classroom. The Science Teacher 71:40-43. <br />
  59. 59. DNA Gel Electrophoresis<br />for the Classroom <br />Using Household Materials<br />
  60. 60. Thanks!<br />WSU Crew<br />Brian Kilmer<br />James Crisler<br />Tim Eberl<br />Kyle Rowe<br />Trista Newville<br />Ashley Peppers<br />Thao Nguyen<br />Todd Caton<br />Lisa Witte<br />NASA Crew<br />Fei Chen<br />Ben Clarke<br />USD259 Crew<br />Stan Ens<br />Leah Kasten<br />Ed Pokorski<br />Sharon McCue<br />

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