ISSN 2344 – 1283, ISSN CD-ROM 2344 – 1291, ISSN ONLINE 2344 – 1305, ISSN-L 2344 – 1283


Published in Scientific Papers. Series "Journal of Young Scientist", Vol. 8
Written by Cornel STOICA, Irina TOMAŞU

The aim of this review is to highlight the survival abilities of the Deinococcus radiodurans bacterium after it suffers degradation caused by exposure to high levels of ionizing radiation. Ionizing radiation is a type of energy either in wavelength or particle form, able to produce ions by removal of electrons and breaking of chemical bonds and with harmful potential leading to DNA strand breaks and cell death. Deinococcus radiodurans has built up a strong resilience to factors like dehydration and oxidative stress, the imbalance between reactive oxygen species and antioxidants. It relies on a complex defence system comprising of several mechanisms such as: catalase and superoxide dismutase, enzymes capable of breaking down the harmful free radicals; nonenzymatic antioxidants like manganese and carotenoids complexes, among which deinoxanthin is a pigment produced solely by this particular bacterium and transcriptional regulatory proteins - PpRM, IrrE, DdrA-. This ability to withstand the oxidative stress of the ionizing radiation led to the discovery of a wide range of practical applications such as usage in the medical field, in environmental protection like cleaning toxic and radioactive waste and even prospective use in areas with high levels of radiation like the surface of planet Mars.

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