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Jan 17, 2014
Extreme-tolerant bacteria (82 strains; 67 species) isolated during various assembly phases of the Phoenix spacecraft were permanently archived within the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service Culture Collection in Peoria, Illinois. This represents the first microbial collection of spacecraft-associated surfaces within the United States to be deposited into a freely available, government-funded culture collection. Archiving extreme-tolerant microorganisms from NASA mission(s) will provide opportunities for scientists who are involved in exploring microbes that can tolerate extreme conditions.