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Biomarker Preservation and Survivability under extreme Dryness and Mars-like UV flux of a desert Cyanobacterium capable of Trehalose and Sucrose accumulation

Fagliarone, C. and Napoli, A. and Chiavarini, S. and Baque, M. and de Vera, J. P. and Billi, Daniela (2020) Biomarker Preservation and Survivability under extreme Dryness and Mars-like UV flux of a desert Cyanobacterium capable of Trehalose and Sucrose accumulation. Frontiers in Astronomy and Space Sciences. Frontiers Media S.A.. doi: 10.3389/fspas.2020.00031. ISSN 2296-987X.

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Official URL: https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fspas.2020.00031/full

Abstract

Unraveling how long life can persist under extreme dryness and what kind of environmental extremes can be faced by dried microorganisms is relevant to understand Mars habitability and to search for life on planets with transient liquid water availability. Because trehalose and sucrose stabilize dried anhydrobiotes, an in silico survey of the genome of the desert cyanobacterium Chroococcidiopsis sp. CCMEE 029 was performed to identify pathways for trehalose and sucrose biosynthesis. The expression of the identified genes was induced in response to desiccation, and trehalose and sucrose accumulation was detected in dried cells. This adaptation strategy enabled viability and biomarker permanence under extreme dryness and Mars-like UV flux. Chroococcidiopsis survivors were scored in 7-year dried biofilms mixed with phyllosilicatic Mars regolith simulant and exposed to 5.5 × 103 kJ/m2 of a Mars-like UV flux. No survivors occurred after exposure to 5.5 × 105 kJ/m2 although, in dead cells, photosynthetic pigments, and nucleic acids, both DNA and RNA, were still detectable. This suggests that dried biofilms mixed with phyllosilicatic Martian regolith simulant are suitable candidates to identify biosignatures embedded in planetary analog minerals as planned in the future BioSignatures and habitable Niches (BioSigN) space mission to be performed outside the International Space Station.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/135532/
Document Type:Article
Title:Biomarker Preservation and Survivability under extreme Dryness and Mars-like UV flux of a desert Cyanobacterium capable of Trehalose and Sucrose accumulation
Authors:
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iD
Fagliarone, C.Department of Biology, Laboratory of Astrobiology and Molecular Biology of Cyanobacteria from Extreme Environments, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy.UNSPECIFIED
Napoli, A.Department of Biology, Laboratory of Astrobiology and Molecular Biology of Cyanobacteria from Extreme Environments, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy.UNSPECIFIED
Chiavarini, S.Department of Biology, Laboratory of Astrobiology and Molecular Biology of Cyanobacteria from Extreme Environments, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy.UNSPECIFIED
Baque, M.Mickael.Baque (at) dlr.dehttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-6696-6030
de Vera, J. P.jean-pierre.devera (at) dlr.dehttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-9530-5821
Billi, DanielaDepartment of Biology, Laboratory of Astrobiology and Molecular Biology of Cyanobacteria from Extreme Environments, University of Rome Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy.UNSPECIFIED
Date:14 July 2020
Journal or Publication Title:Frontiers in Astronomy and Space Sciences
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:Yes
Gold Open Access:Yes
In SCOPUS:Yes
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
DOI :10.3389/fspas.2020.00031
Publisher:Frontiers Media S.A.
ISSN:2296-987X
Status:Published
Keywords:biosignatures; anhydrobiosis; Mars simulation; desert cyanobacteria; life detection
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Space Exploration
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R EW - Space Exploration
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Vorhaben Planetary Evolution and Life (old)
Location: Berlin-Adlershof
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Planetary Research > Planetary Laboratories
Deposited By: de Vera, Dr. Jean Pierre Paul
Deposited On:10 Aug 2020 13:07
Last Modified:14 Oct 2020 04:18

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