YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, WY: Close view of a thermophile at Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming.
COPYRIGHT 2015 Emon Hassan
Thermophiles are heat-loving microorganisms that live in the hot spring waters of the park. Thermophiles are a type of extremophile and contain enzymes that allow them to function a temperatures above 45°C. They may be archaea, bacteria or algae. Due to their tolerance for heat, some have been found to be useful in DNA replication processes and as cleansing agents in detergents. Researchers from NASA and biomedical fields are also interested in the thermophiles in Yellowstone.