Single-celled organisms which are bounded by ether-linked lipid membranes which contain isoprinoid side chains instead of fatty acids. The most famous of the Crenarchaeota are the hyperthermophiles, organisms which thrive at temperatures close to the boiling point of water. Members of the crenarchaeal order Sulfolobales also live in extremely acidic waters. However, further research has shown that these organisms are also common in moderate-temperature water and soil.
Microbe from Depths Takes Life to Hottest Known Limit
A newly discovered organism thrives near deep-sea ocean vents at temperatures up to 121C, living off dissolved iron. Images, video, and links to related research. Press release from the National Science Foundation. (August 14, 2003)
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