For long, scientists have held to a belief that if any microbes from Earth ever made their way to Mars, they would die instantly because of the harsh circumstances. However, a new study has proved this wrong, much to the ‘horror’ of the scientific community.
In order to reach this conclusions, scientists embarked on a study which included gathering bacteria from the Siberian permafrost. This region is known for its very harsh conditions and the bacteria found here were expected to adapt when exposed to similar harsh conditions on Mars.
Bacteria gathered from the permafrost were then harvested and grown in cultures within labs. During the course of the experiment, scientists were able to gather some 1,000 bacteria which were ready for the final phase of being exposed to Mars-like harsh conditions.
The surface of Mars supports very low levels of oxygen and is extremely cold. During one month of being exposed to such circumstances in simulated environment, nearly all of the 1,000 bacteria died, except six. These six bacteria not only survived the bitter circumstances, but also continued to thrive.
This essentially shows that if these bacteria reach the surface of Mars, they will be able to adapt to the circumstances and survive where humans can not. The revelation has led scientists to be more vigilant in making sure that such microbes do not reach the Red Planet. Otherwise, some of our science-fiction horrors have a tiny chance of becoming real some day.