Summary response paper

Submitted By hannayray
Words: 395
Pages: 2

Hanna Ray
Professor Anderson
World Regional Geography
22 April 2014
Life Forms in Extreme Environments In the article, “Extreme life forms: Life found in the sediments of an Antarctic sub glacial lake for the first time” information from the British Antarctic Survey says that there may be new life forms found in extreme conditions. A group of British scientists went to Antarctica to explore the theory that life forms once existed in the dark and deep lakes hidden beneath the ice sheets in Antarctica that were buried over 100,000 years ago. The temperature at the North and South poles have both been rising. Therefore, the ice sheets are melting. The scientists explored Lake Hodgson, which was once covered in 400 meter thick ice sheets and is now covered by only 3-4 meters. They drilled into the ice 93 meters deep to reach the bottom of the lake where they would look for any clues of life forms in the sediment. The top of the core contained recent and current organisms but deep down about 3.2 meters they discovered microbes up to 100,000 years old. Surprisingly there was great diversity among these microbes. Microbes have never been identified in a sub glacial Antarctic lake before. We would usually consider these habitats to be too extreme for any life, but this discovery has changed scientists’ minds. This is the beginning of a great discovery that could lead to further discoveries about organisms and how to survive even without oxygen. Twenty three percent of the DNA found in this lake have not been identified yet before. This increases scientist’s