How animals in the hydrothermal vent can live with the high temperature.

Bob bbruner at uclink4.berkeley.edu
Sat Mar 30 21:48:53 EST 2002

On Fri, 29 Mar 2002 22:22:10 +0000, Jonathan Silverlight
<jsilver at merseia.fsnet.co.uk> wrote:

>If you're thinking of the paper I think you are (it's on-line at the 
>PNAS web site) they _didn't_ find infectivity at 1000C but they did at 
>600C. Their theory is that some inorganic matrix survives at that 
>temperature but not at 1000C.

<re prions>

I recall looking at that paper earlier. Intriguing, but the conclusion
is rather suspicious, and the data are sparse. 

Has anyone either repeated this or followed up? 

As an example of a concern... how do we know the T to which the prion
material was actually exposed? Poor heat transfer in some "corner" of
the apparatus, and, voila, survival. If I recall, the survival of
infectivity at 600 deg was low, so it wouldn't take much of a cool
spot in the apparatus.


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