Hadesarchaea, formerly called the South-African Gold Mine Miscellaneous Euryarchaeal Group, are a class of thermophile microorganisms that have been found in deep mines, hot springs and other subterranean environments.
These archea were initially called South-African Gold Mine Miscellaneous Euryarchaeal Group (SAGMEG) after their initial site of discovery. The name Hadesarchaea was proposed by Baker et al. in 2016, a reference to the Greek god of the underworld.
Habitat and metabolism
These microbes were first discovered in a gold mine in South Africa at a depth of approximately 3 km (2 mi), where they are able to live without oxygen or light. They were later also found in the White Oak River estuary in North Carolina and in Yellowstone National Park's Lower Culex Basin. These areas are approximately 70 °C (158 °F) and highly alkaline.
Hadesarchaea are unique among known archaea in that they can convert carbon monoxide and water to carbon dioxide and oxygen, producing hydrogen as a by-product. In other ways, they are similar to anerobic euryarchaeotic bacteria. Initial research suggests that these organisms are also involved in significant geochemical processes.
- Baker, Brett J.; Saw, Jimmy H.; Lind, Anders E.; Lazar, Cassandra Sara; Hinrichs, Kai-Uwe; Teske, Andreas P.; Ettema, Thijs J.G. (February 16, 2016). "Genomic inference of the metabolism of cosmopolitan subsurface Archaea, Hadesarchaea". Nature Microbiology. 1 (3): 16002. doi:10.1038/nmicrobiol.2016.2. Retrieved February 25, 2016.
- Ettema, Thijs (February 17, 2016). "New paper about the Hadesarchaea published!". Ettema Lab. Retrieved February 25, 2016.
- "Hadesarchaea: a New Archaeal Class of Cosmopolitan Deep Microbes". Deep Carbon Observatory. February 18, 2016. Retrieved February 25, 2016.
- "Scientists discover new microbes that thrive deep in the earth" (Press release). Uppsala University. February 15, 2016. Retrieved February 25, 2016.
- "Underworld microbes shock scientists: Mystery of Hadesarchaea". India Today. New Delhi. February 17, 2016. Retrieved February 25, 2016.
- Atherton, Matt (February 15, 2016). "God of the underworld microbes Hadesarchaea discovered living on toxic gas deep below Yellowstone hot springs". IB Times. Retrieved February 25, 2016.
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