After more than 120,000 years trapped beneath a block of ice in Greenland, a tiny microbe has awoken. The long-lasting bacteria may hold clues to what life forms might exist on other planets.
The new bacteria species was found nearly 2 miles (3 km) beneath a Greenland glacier, where temperatures can dip well below freezing, pressure soars, and food and oxygen are scarce.
"We don't know what state they were in," said study team member Jean Brenchley of Pennsylvania State University. "They could've been dormant, or they could've been slowly metabolizing, but we don't know for sure."
Pictured: Artist rendering of the sort of lowest known form of life that was recently awakened.