Microbial diversity and adaptation to high hydrostatic pressure in deep-sea hydrothermal vents prokaryotes Review uri icon

DCO ID 11121/1397-2235-9671-4073-CC

is Contribution to the DCO

  • YES

year of publication

  • 2015


  • Prokaryotes inhabiting in the deep sea vent ecosystem will thus experience harsh conditions of temperature, pH, salinity or high hydrostatic pressure (HHP) stress. Among the fifty-two piezophilic and piezotolerant prokaryotes isolated so far from different deep-sea environments, only fifteen (four Bacteria and eleven Archaea) that are true hyper/thermophiles and piezophiles have been isolated from deep-sea hydrothermal vents; these belong mainly to the Thermococcales order. Different strategies are used by microorganisms to thrive in deep-sea hydrothermal vents in which “extreme” physico-chemical conditions prevail and where non-adapted organisms cannot live, or even survive. HHP is known to impact the structure of several cellular components and functions, such as membrane fluidity, protein activity and structure. Physically the impact of pressure resembles a lowering of temperature, since it reinforces the structure of certain molecules, such as membrane lipids, and an increase in temperature, since it will also destabilize other structures, such as proteins. However, universal molecular signatures of HHP adaptation are not yet known and are still to be deciphered.


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