WE’D ALL LIKE TO GET TO MARS. LET’S MAKE SURE WE DON’T GET SICK ALONG THE WAY.

While Hollywood loves to imagine humans encountering all manner of horrific monsters in the depths of space, the greatest threat to a long-term, manned space mission may not come with tentacles, or extra mouths, or an insatiable love for human flesh. It may, in fact,  be the invisible microbes that hitch a ride with us from Earth.

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ULTRASMALL BACTERIA FROM ANTARCTIC LAKE RAISE QUESTIONS ABOUT THE LIMITS OF LIFE.

Imagine you were forced to live in perpetually subzero temperatures, with no oxygen, no light, and way more salt than your system could handle. How would you manage? One way might be to get extremely small. At least, that seems to be what’s happening in a frozen Antarctic lake that’s cut off from the rest of the world by 27 meters of perennial ice.

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DEEP BUT NOT DEAD: HOW TROPICAL SUBSOIL MICROBES COULD AFFECT THE CARBON CYCLE.

It’s no exaggeration to say the tropics drive our planet’s carbon cycle – the constant transfer of carbon back and forth, on a global scale, between living things and the environment. Understanding the dynamics of the carbon cycle is increasingly important because more carbon in the atmosphere increases the warming greenhouse effect.

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