Volume 92 Issue 32 | p. 23 | Concentrates
Issue Date: August 11, 2014 | Web Date: August 12, 2014

Microbes Find A Home In Oily Water Droplets

Studies of an asphalt lake reveal previously unknown degradation of natural petroleum deposits
Department: Science & Technology
News Channels: Environmental SCENE
Keywords: microbe, oil, hydrocarbon, petroleum, extremeophile

The latest extreme environment in which microbes have been discovered to exist is within water droplets trapped in a natural asphalt lake, reports a team led by Rainer U. Meckenstock of the German Research Center for Environmental Health (Science 2014, DOI: 10.1126/science.1252215). Anaerobic microbial degradation of hydrocarbons harms the quality of petroleum reservoirs, but scientists had believed that such activity occurred mostly at geological transition zones between layers of water and . . .

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