, Volume 12, Issue 5, pp 713–717 | Cite as

A bacterial ice-binding protein from the Vostok ice core

  • James A. RaymondEmail author
  • Brent C. Christner
  • Stephan C. Schuster
Original Paper


Bacterial and yeast isolates recovered from a deep Antarctic ice core were screened for proteins with ice-binding activity, an indicator of adaptation to icy environments. A bacterial strain recovered from glacial ice at a depth of 3,519 m, just above the accreted ice from Subglacial Lake Vostok, was found to produce a 54 kDa ice-binding protein (GenBank EU694412) that is similar to ice-binding proteins previously found in sea ice diatoms, a snow mold, and a sea ice bacterium. The protein has the ability to inhibit the recrystallization of ice, a phenotype that has clear advantages for survival in ice.


Subglacial Lake Vostok Flavobacteriaceae Ice-binding protein Recrystallization inhibition Ice grain boundaries 



We thank A. Chien, K. Schegg, B. Arnold for valuable assistance, S. Doyle for microscopic imaging, and J. Priscu for discussion. This work was partially supported by an NIH IMBRE grant. B. C. is supported by NSF grants EAR-0525567 and OPP-0636828.


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Copyright information

© Springer 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • James A. Raymond
    • 1
    Email author
  • Brent C. Christner
    • 2
  • Stephan C. Schuster
    • 3
  1. 1.School of Life SciencesUniversity of NevadaLas VegasUSA
  2. 2.Department of Biological SciencesLouisiana State UniversityBaton RougeUSA
  3. 3.Center for Comparative Genomics and BioinformaticsPennsylvania State UniversityUniversity ParkUSA

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