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Proceedings Paper

Endolithic biofilms: a model for extraterrestrial ecological niches?
Author(s): Wolfhart Pohl; Michael Hoppert; Christine Flies; Bettina Gunzl; Hans Ruppert; Juergen Schneider
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Paper Abstract

In natural ecosystems, bacteria, unicellular algae, filamentous and yeast-like fungi are often organized in thin films attached to or entrenched in substrata such as surfaces of solid rocks, minerals or larger organisms. Frequently the formation of a biofilm is the most successful survival strategy. Especially within endolithic biofilms micro-organisms actively create a safe niche to avoid extreme and thus harmful environmental conditions such as electromagnetic radiation, mechanical abrasion, water and temperature stress and hazardous chemical agents. Exemplary survival strategies are presented for bacteria, ascomycetes and green algae. On substrata without organic carbon sources, biofilms are composed of chemolithotrophic or phototrophic primary producers and heterotrophic organisms (including destruents).

Paper Details

Date Published: 30 December 1999
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 3755, Instruments, Methods, and Missions for Astrobiology II, (30 December 1999); doi: 10.1117/12.375079
Show Author Affiliations
Wolfhart Pohl, Univ. Goettingen (Germany)
Michael Hoppert, Univ. Goettingen (Germany)
Christine Flies, Univ. Goettingen (Germany)
Bettina Gunzl, Univ. Goettingen (Germany)
Hans Ruppert, Univ. Goettingen (Germany)
Juergen Schneider, Univ. Goettingen (Germany)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3755:
Instruments, Methods, and Missions for Astrobiology II
Richard B. Hoover, Editor(s)

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