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Survival of microorganisms in smectite clays - Implications for Martian exobiologyThe survival of Baccillus subtilis, Azotobacter chroococcum, and the enteric bacteriophage MS2 has been examined in clays representing terrestrial (Wyoming type montmorillonite) and Martian (Fe3+ montmorillonite) soils exposed to terrestrial and Martian environmental conditions of temperature and atmospheric composition and pressure. An important finding is that MS2 survived simulated Mars conditions better than the terrestrial environment, probably owing to stabilization of the virus caused by the cold and dry conditions of the simulated Mars environment. This finding, the first published indication that viruses may be able to survive in Mars-type soils, may have important implications for future missions to Mars.
Document ID
19920072323
Document Type
Reprint (Version printed in journal)
Authors
Moll, Deborah M. (NASA Ames Research Center Moffett Field, CA, United States)
Vestal, J. R. (Cincinnati, University OH, United States)
Date Acquired
August 15, 2013
Publication Date
August 1, 1992
Publication Information
Publication: Icarus
Volume: 98
Issue: 2 Au
ISSN: 0019-1035
Subject Category
SPACE BIOLOGY
Funding Number(s)
CONTRACT_GRANT: NCA2-366
Distribution Limits
Public
Copyright
Other