Open Questions: Archaea and Extremophiles

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See also: Microbiology

Introduction


Recommended references: Web sites

Recommended references: Magazine/journal articles

Recommended references: Books

Introduction



Recommended references: Web sites

Site indexes

Interesting links for Archaea
Extensive list of links to sites and articles. Also has links to genmome sequences for many archaeans.
Life in Extreme Environments
A well-annotated collection of links to sites dealing with life forms in unlikely places, including such topics as thermophiles, halophiles, archaea, deep ocean vents. Part of the Astrobiology Web.

Sites with general resources

ArchaeaWeb
"The Web's premier archaea and extremophile information resource". Site contains technical information, such as a directory of publications and gene sequences. Also includes external links, especially links to survey articles for a general audience.
Archaea
Peer-reviewed journal dealing with archaea.

Surveys, overviews, tutorials

Archaea
Article from Wikipedia. See also Extremophile.
Introduction to the Archaea
Very informative set of pages about the kingdom of archaea. Includes information on the fossil record, life history, systematics, and morphology, as well as some external links.
Eukaryotes in extreme environments
Information compiled by Dave Roberts on eukaryotic extremophiles. Different types are described, and there is a substantial list of references.
Extremophiles: Living on the Edge
August 22, 2003 special issue of the Genome News Network. The articles are detailed, but very interesting and accessible to a general audience.
Gene Regulation in Hyperthermophilic Archaea
Brief summary of research at Paul Blum Laboratory.
Domain Archaea
Portion of course lecture notes, by Bharat Patel. Discusses DNA replication and transcription in Archaea.
The Thermo-Files
September 2000 Scientific American news article, about sequencing the genome of Thermoplasma acidophilum.
Deep sea aliens or long lost relatives?
June 2000 news article about extremeophiles found in boiling water and subsisting on copper, gold, and zinc.


Recommended references: Magazine/journal articles

Deep Life
Alexandra Witze
Science NewsFebruary 22, 1012
Teeming masses of organisms thrive beneath the seafloor.
Extremophiles
Michael T. Madigan; Barry L. Marrs
Scientific American, April 1997, pp. 82-87
Microbes known as extremophiles which live in extreme environments -- very hot, very cold, highly acidic, alkaline, or saline -- are are the subject of active research. Unlike known prokaryotic or eukaryotic life forms, most of these microbes belong to the "new" domain of archaea.
Deep Dwellers
Richard Monastersky
Science News, March 29, 1997
Microbes Deep Inside the Earth
James K. Fredrickson; Tullis C. Onstott
Scientific American, October 1996, pp. 68-73
Over 9000 strains of microorganisms, including bacteria and fungi, have been found in a variety of subsurface environments. Some such microorganisms must be capable of living in temperatures as high as 110° C and utilizing unusual chemical reactions as a source of energy. They may provide clues to how life originally developed.


Recommended references: Books

John L. Howland – The Surprising Archaea: Discovering Another Domain of Life
Oxford University Press, 2000
The popular literature on archaea is obviously, though unfortunately, scant. Perhaps the subject seems too esoteric to most general readers. But Howland manages to make it fascinating how single-celled creatures that so much resemble bacteria are actually very different in significant ways. The short book doesn't stint on technical details, but is quite accessible to science-minded readers.

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Copyright © 2002 by Charles Daney, All Rights Reserved