A new small antifreeze protein from an Antarctic springtail
What is it about?
Springtails are found all around the world and are surprisingly tough. Only a few animals live their whole lives in Antarctica and these include a handful of springtail species. Freezing is one of the things Antarctic animals have to cope with. Springtails generally avoid freezing which is an unusual approach if you live in such a cold place. This work describes something about how Antarctic springtails avoid freezing.
Why is it important?
Antifreeze proteins from Canadian springtails have a unique structure and composition. Our initial work on this Antarctic antifreeze suggests it is a very different molecule from the one already described. This suggests that antifreeze proteins might have arisen at least twice in the rather ancient springtail lineage. We would like to find out more about this interesting protein.
The following have contributed to this page: Dr Craig J Marshall