metadata only access
Cell growth at low temperature is dependent on the ability of cells to perform protein synthesis. Cold adapted micro-organisms (psychrophilic or psychrotolerant) have a superior ability to perform translation at low temperature. This review addresses cold adaptation of protein synthesis in Archaea by examining what is presently known about thermal adaptation of elongation factor 2 (EF-2) proteins from Archaea. Despite the knowledge that Archaea are abundant in cold environments (e.g. the ocean), few cold adapted species have been isolated and studied. As a result this review is largely confined to comparative analyses of EF-2 proteins from psychrotolerant (Methanococcoides burtonii) and thermophilic (Methanosarcina thermophila) methanogens. A key finding from these studies is that in addition to inherent properties of the EF-2 proteins, intracellular factors (e.g. ribosomes and intracellular solutes) play a central role in thermal adaptation.