Extremophiles Live Where Most Things Can't
Extremophiles thrive in environments that humans deem "extreme," from lakes with high salt concentrations to deep-sea vents. They produce enzymes called "extremozymes" that help them to survive in these conditions. Specialized groups of extremophiles have different names; an acidophile, for example, is an organism that experiences optimal growth in an acidic pH, whereas a hypolith is an organism that lives beneath rocks in cold deserts.
Check Out This Month's Most Popular Topic
from National Science Foundation
Key Facts In This Video
Extremophiles are organisms that thrive in conditions that seem hostile to life. (0:17)
Extremophiles could potentially teach scientists about alien species. (2:06)
NASA scientist Richard Hoover has tried to find evidence of extremophile-like organisms inside carbonaceous meteorites. (3:13)