Microbes in The Ocean Depths Can Make Oxygen Without Sun. This Discovery Could Be Huge

Microbes in The Ocean Depths Can Make Oxygen Without Sun. This Discovery Could Be Huge

1/11/2022 9:41:00 PM

Microbes in The Ocean Depths Can Make Oxygen Without Sun. This Discovery Could Be Huge

For most of life on Earth, oxygen is essential, and sunlight is usually needed to produce that oxygen. But in an exciting twist, researchers have caught a common, ocean-dwelling microbe breaking all the rules.

Nitrosopumilusmaritimusand several of its cousins, called ammonia oxidizing archaea (AOA), are able to survive in dark, oxygen-depleted environments by producing oxygen on their own. They do so using a biological process that hasn't been seen before.

While it's previously been established that these microbes can live in environments where oxygen is scarce, what hasn't been clear is what they get up to there – and how they're staying alive for as long as they do. That was the inspiration behind this new research.

Read more: ScienceAlert »

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