Hard as nails

日期:2019-03-07 02:06:12 作者:隆呆睃 阅读:

THE genetic secrets of the toughest bacterium on the planet will soon be known, according to Claire Fraser of the Institute for Genomic Research near Washington DC and her colleagues. They have recorded all 3 284 156 letters of its DNA sequence (Science, vol 286, p 1571). Deinococcus radiodurans can survive desiccation, bitter cold, extreme heat and exposure to thousands of times the amount of radiation that would kill a human. The researchers found that the microbe contains more DNA repair genes than any other organism whose genome has so far been sequenced. But Fraser says that even that can only partly explain the bacterium’s hardiness. The rest of the mystery may lie in the 1513 genes with no known function. “We don’t have the puzzle’s answer, but we have all the pieces,