com/article/2012/11/28/us-usa-bacteria-antarctica-idUSBRE8AR19E20121128) under 70 feet of ice and in deep-sea vents
that spew hot sulfur.
Marine scientists studying life around deep-sea vents
have discovered that some hardy species can survive the extreme change in pressure that occurs when a research submersible rises to the surface.
While most deep-sea vents
are driven by volcanic heat under the ocean floor, and create an acidic environment in the surrounding ocean, the Lost City vents are formed by a reaction between mantle rocks and seawater, leading to an alkaline environment.
Lacking normal eyes, the shrimp have a light-sensing organ on their backs, presumably to help them navigate in the faint glow of the deep-sea vents
, said the study, published in the peer-reviewed journal Nature Communication.
And having found yet more "black smoker" vents on an undersea mountain nearby, the researchers suggest that deep-sea vents
may be more widespread around the world than anyone thought.
The discovery is the fourth made by the research team in three years, which suggests that deep-sea vents
may be more common in our oceans than previously thought.
The boiling water that gushes out from deep-sea vents
helps to nourish colonies of marine creatures.
Ever since deep-sea vents
were first discovered in 1977, they have yielded a treasure trove of scientific clues about how our planet's surface formed, how the oceans' chemistry works, even how life may have started on Earth.
There's the deepest point on Earth, an area known as the Mariana Trench, towering underwater volcanoes, and deep-sea vents
that spew scorching-hot water.
Growth and distribution of mollusks at deep-sea vents
Evidence of chemoautotrophic primary production at deep-sea vents
and seeps and ultrastructural and enzymatic studies of mussel gill tissue led to the conclusion that bathymodiolin mussels depend on chemoautotrophic endosymbiotic bacteria (thiotrophic and/or methanotrophic, Cavanaugh 1983, Fisher et al.
Ward compellingly examines the hiding places of known life, taking the reader to deep-sea vents
and the coldest corners of the globe, showing us that life can take forms unimagined until they were recently discovered.