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Proceedings Paper

Technologically important extremophile 16S rRNA sequence Shannon entropy and fractal property comparison with long term dormant microbes
Author(s): Todd Holden; N. Gadura; S. Dehipawala; E. Cheung; M. Tuffour; P. Schneider; G. Tremberger; D. Lieberman; T. Cheung
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Paper Abstract

Technologically important extremophiles including oil eating microbes, uranium and rocket fuel perchlorate reduction microbes, electron producing microbes and electrode electrons feeding microbes were compared in terms of their 16S rRNA sequences, a standard targeted sequence in comparative phylogeny studies. Microbes that were reported to have survived a prolonged dormant duration were also studied. Examples included the recently discovered microbe that survives after 34,000 years in a salty environment while feeding off organic compounds from other trapped dead microbes. Shannon entropy of the 16S rRNA nucleotide composition and fractal dimension of the nucleotide sequence in terms of its atomic number fluctuation analyses suggest a selected range for these extremophiles as compared to other microbes; consistent with the experience of relatively mild evolutionary pressure. However, most of the microbes that have been reported to survive in prolonged dormant duration carry sequences with fractal dimension between 1.995 and 2.005 (N = 10 out of 13). Similar results are observed for halophiles, red-shifted chlorophyll and radiation resistant microbes. The results suggest that prolonged dormant duration, in analogous to high salty or radiation environment, would select high fractal 16S rRNA sequences. Path analysis in structural equation modeling supports a causal relation between entropy and fractal dimension for the studied 16S rRNA sequences (N = 7). Candidate choices for high fractal 16S rRNA microbes could offer protection for prolonged spaceflights. BioBrick gene network manipulation could include extremophile 16S rRNA sequences in synthetic biology and shed more light on exobiology and future colonization in shielded spaceflights. Whether the high fractal 16S rRNA sequences contain an asteroidlike extra-terrestrial source could be speculative but interesting.

Paper Details

Date Published: 23 September 2011
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 8152, Instruments, Methods, and Missions for Astrobiology XIV, 81520T (23 September 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.893450
Show Author Affiliations
Todd Holden, Queensborough Community College of CUNY (United States)
N. Gadura, Queensborough Community College of CUNY (United States)
S. Dehipawala, Queensborough Community College of CUNY (United States)
E. Cheung, Queensborough Community College of CUNY (United States)
M. Tuffour, Queensborough Community College of CUNY (United States)
P. Schneider, Queensborough Community College of CUNY (United States)
G. Tremberger, Queensborough Community College of CUNY (United States)
D. Lieberman, Queensborough Community College of CUNY (United States)
T. Cheung, Queensborough Community College of CUNY (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 8152:
Instruments, Methods, and Missions for Astrobiology XIV
Richard B. Hoover; Paul C. W. Davies; Gilbert V. Levin; Alexei Yu. Rozanov, Editor(s)

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