Science: Life from a Deep Freeze

As if to ensure the survival of some species over long periods of drought and temperature extremes, nature has produced organisms that can exist many years in suspended animation. Last week two scientists announced that in soil samples taken from deep below the surface of Antarctica, they found frozen bacteria that may be anywhere from 10,000 to 1 million years old. When incubated, some of the bacteria not only returned to life but also reproduced.

Microbiologists Roy Cameron and Frank Morelli made their discovery by accident. The researchers, now at the Darwin Research Institute in Dana Point, Calif., had been working for...

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