A new study showed that microorganisms can fight heat together. The continuation of such experiments will predict the reaction of the planet to climate change.
Researchers have suggested that high temperatures, depending on microorganisms, lead to their increased reproduction or death. In a new article published in the journal Nature Microbiology, scientists from Delft University of Technology described how microorganisms can interact in order to survive. They performed baker’s yeast experiments (Saccharomyces cerevisiae).
They described a collaborative strategy that organisms use to survive. For this, scientists developed a mathematical model that showed that yeast helps each other at temperatures around 40 ° C or higher.
“We found that they can work together to clean up the environment. As the temperature rises, the yeast cells secrete glutathione to help each other replicate. Glutathione drowns out harmful chemicals – for example, reactive oxygen species that damage cells, ”the scientists said.
Specialists from Delft studied how populations of different densities reacted to temperature changes. It turned out that there is a direct connection between this – only large populations can cope with very high temperatures. Researchers have explained that if enough yeast cells work together in a population, then they are able to produce as much glutathione as they can survive.
According to the authors of a scientific article, this study is especially relevant due to climate change. “We do not yet understand how different species will cope with high temperatures. This would allow us to more accurately predict how the planet will respond to climate change, ”the researchers noted.