How long can frozen plant material remain viable?

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Offline thedoc

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A plant frozen in Siberia for over 30,000 years has been brought back to life by scientists in Russia.

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« Last Edit: 01/03/2012 11:19:46 by _system »


Offline CliffordK

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Re: How long can frozen plant material remain viable?
« Reply #1 on: 01/03/2012 12:46:59 »
Most interesting.

I'd wonder if there was DNA fragmentation in the plant, and how it dealt with it.

Being a eukaryote, it should have chromosomes, so it would be interesting to see a chromosome comparison between the resuscitated plant, and the nearest living relative.

This could have important implications for potentially resuscitating long frozen mammals too.
« Last Edit: 01/03/2012 12:48:42 by CliffordK »


Offline Don_1

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Re: How long can frozen plant material remain viable?
« Reply #2 on: 01/03/2012 14:05:24 »
The fact that over a period of just 31,000 years this plant has changed, demonstrates the potential importance of the Millennium Seed Bank in the distant, and perhaps not-so-distant future. It would be interesting to see the result of cross pollination of the modern plant and its ancient ancestor.

This resurrection of an ancient plant is proof that the seed bank is not only viable, but worthwhile. A successful cross pollination of the ancient and modern plants would give an indication of the possibilities of restoring long lost properties of plants and, in particular, food crops.

The Millennium Seed Bank also needs to investigate the best practice for the storage of seeds over extended periods and this discovery can only be music to their ears. It also demonstrates that it is not only seed storage that can be the salvation of lost species. Perhaps root, growing tips and ‘runners’ should also be considered for storage in a deep freeze.
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