EurekAlert: Glyerol protects algae from salt and cold

AAAS EurekAlert! features a newly published research article co-authored by Co-PI Rachael Morgan-Kiss showing that two species of the single-celled green algae Chlamydomonas from Antarctica, called UWO241 and ICE-MDV, produce high levels of glycerol to protect them from osmotic water loss, and possibly also from freezing injury. Glycerol, used in the past as antifreeze for cars, is produced by a range of organisms from yeasts to vertebrates, some of which use it as an osmoprotectant - a molecule that prevents dangerous water loss in salty environments - while others use it as an antifreeze. 

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