A new book, titled Life in Extreme Environments: Insights in Biological Capability, edited by Guido di Prisco, ,
Life in Extreme Environments brings together articles showcasing the wealth of life in extreme environments. This book provides a captivating account of these systems and their extraordinary inhabitants, 'extremophiles'. A diverse, multidisciplinary group of experts discuss responses and adaptations to change; biodiversity, bioenergetic processes, and biotic and abiotic interactions; polar environments; and life and habitability, including searching for biosignatures in the extraterrestrial environment. The editors emphasize that understanding these systems is important for increasing our knowledge and utilizing their potential, but this remains an understudied area. Given the threat to these environments and their biota caused by climate change and human impact, this timely book also addresses the urgency to document these systems.
Several Chapters of this book are products of our SCAR Groups and Scientific Research Programmes.
The research for chapter seven, "Life in the extreme environments of our planet under pressure", was carried out in the framework of the former SCAR programme ‘Evolution and Biodiversity in the Antarctic’ (EBA). The authors were Melody S. Clark (British Antarctic Survey), Cinzia Verde (National Research Council (CNR) – Institute of Bioscience and BioResources (IBBR)), Silvia Fineschi (Institute of Heritage Science), Francesco Loreto (Institute of Heritage Science), Lloyd S. Peck (British Antarctic Survey) and Guido di Prisco (National Research Council (CNR) – Institute of Bioscience and BioResources (IBBR)).
Chapter nine, "The Southern Ocean: an extreme environment or just home of unique ecosystems?", is a product of the Scientific Research Programme Antarctic Thresholds – Ecosystem Resilience and Adaptation (AnT-ERA). The chapter was written by AnT-ERA Chief Officer Julian Gutt and Gerhard Dieckmann (both Alfred Wegener Institute, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research Bremerhaven).
di Prisco, Guido; Edwards, Howell G.; Elster, Josef; Huiskes, Ad H. (2020) Life in Extreme Environments: Insights in Biological Capability, Cambridge University Press.