Miguel Angel Fernández-Martínez

Miguel Angel Fernández-Martínez
McGill University | McGill · Department of Natural Resource Sciences

PhD

About

30
Publications
10,217
Reads
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244
Citations
Additional affiliations
November 2019 - present
McGill University
Position
  • PostDoc Position
April 2017 - October 2019
Centro de Astrobiología
Position
  • PostDoc Position
September 2010 - July 2016
The National Museum of Natural Sciences
Position
  • PhD

Publications

Publications (30)
Article
Full-text available
Paleobiological reconstructions based on molecular fossils may be limited by degradation processes causing differential preservation of biomolecules, the distinct taxonomic specificity of each biomolecule type, and analytical biases. Here, we combined the analysis of DNA, proteins and lipid biomarkers using 16S and 18S rRNA gene metabarcoding, meta...
Article
Lost Hammer Spring, located in the High Arctic of Nunavut, Canada, is one of the coldest and saltiest terrestrial springs discovered to date. It perennially discharges anoxic (<1 ppm dissolved oxygen), sub-zero (~−5 °C), and hypersaline (~24% salinity) brines from the subsurface through up to 600 m of permafrost. The sediment is sulfate-rich (1 M)...
Article
With no direct extant-life detection instrumentation included in a space mission since the 1970s, the advancement of new technologies to be included in future space missions is imperative. We developed, optimized, and tested a semi-automated prototype, the microfluidics Microbial Activity MicroAssay (μMAMA). This system metabolically characterizes...
Article
Full-text available
The polar regions provide valuable insights into the functioning of the Earth’s regulating systems. Conducting field research in such harsh and remote environments requires strong international cooperation, extended planning horizons, sizable budgets and long-term investment. Consequently, polar research is particularly vulnerable to societal and e...
Article
Full-text available
Nunataks are permanent ice-free rocky peaks that project above ice caps in polar regions, thus being exposed to extreme climatic conditions throughout the year. They undergo extremely low temperatures and scarcity of liquid water in winter, while receiving high incident and reflected (albedo) UVA-B radiation in summer. Here, we investigate the geom...
Article
Martian lava tube caves resulting from a time when the planet was still volcanically active are proposed to contain deposits of water ice, a feature that may increase microbial habitability. In this study, we taxonomically characterized and directly measured metabolic activity of the microbial communities that inhabit lava tube ice from Lava Beds N...
Article
Full-text available
The modern Martian surface is unlikely to be habitable due to its extreme aridity among other environmental factors. This is the reason why the hyperarid core of the Atacama Desert has been studied as an analog for the habitability of Mars for more than 50 years. Here we report a layer enriched in smectites located just 30 cm below the surface of t...
Article
Full-text available
An amendment to this paper has been published and can be accessed via a link at the top of the paper.
Article
Full-text available
Sulfate and iron oxide deposits in Río Tinto (Southwestern Spain) are a terrestrial analog of early martian hematite-rich regions. Understanding the distribution and drivers of microbial life in iron-rich environments can give critical clues on how to search for biosignatures on Mars. We simulated a robotic drilling mission searching for signs of l...
Article
Full-text available
Here we inspect whether microbial life may disperse using dust transported by wind in the Atacama Desert in northern Chile, a well-known Mars analog model. By setting a simple experiment across the hyperarid core of the Atacama we found that a number of viable bacteria and fungi are in fact able to traverse the driest and most UV irradiated desert...
Article
Full-text available
Substrate-atmosphere interfaces in Antarctic geothermal environments are hot-cold regions that constitute thin habitable niches for microorganisms with possible counterparts in ancient Mars. Cerro Caliente hill in Deception Island (active volcano in the South Shetland Islands) is affected by ascending hydrothermal fluids that form a band of warm su...
Article
Full-text available
The Atacama Desert, the oldest and driest desert on Earth, displays significant rains only once per decade. To investigate how microbial communities take advantage of these sporadic wet events, we carried out a geomicrobiological study a few days after a heavy rain event in 2015. Different physicochemical and microbial community analyses were condu...
Article
Full-text available
A correction to this article has been published and is linked from the HTML and PDF versions of this paper. The error has not been fixed in the paper.
Article
Full-text available
Potential benthic habitats of early Mars lakes, probably oligotrophic, could range from hydrothermal to cold sediments. Dynamic processes in the water column (such as turbidity or UV penetration) as well as in the benthic bed (temperature gradients, turbation, or sedimentation rate) contribute to supply nutrients to a potential microbial ecosystem....
Article
Full-text available
Geothermal springs support microbial communities at elevated temperatures in an ecosystem with high preservation potential that makes them interesting analogs for early evolution of the biogeosphere. The El Tatio geysers field in the Atacama Desert has astrobiological relevance due to the unique occurrence of geothermal features with steep hydrothe...
Article
Full-text available
The hyperarid core of the Atacama Desert, the driest and oldest desert on Earth, has experienced a number of highly unusual rain events over the past three years, resulting in the formation of previously unrecorded hypersaline lagoons, which have lasted several months. We have systematically analyzed the evolution of the lagoons to provide quantita...
Article
Full-text available
Following the retreat of a glacier, microbial colonization paves the way for future plant successions as nutrients are gradually introduced into the ecosystem. Characterizing the dynamics of this initial microbial colonization process is a key to understanding how these rapidly receding glacier areas are colonized. This study examines primary succe...
Article
Full-text available
A previously established chronosequence from Pia Glacier forefield in Tierra del Fuego (Chile) containing soils of different ages (from bare soils to forest ones) is analyzed. We used this chronosequence as framework to postulate that microbial successional development would be accompanied by changes in functionality. To test this, the GeoChip func...
Article
Full-text available
The majority of biomass in the McMurdo Dry Valleys of Antarctica occurs within rocks and soils, but despite the wealth of biodiversity data very little is known about the potential functionality of communities within these substrates. The putative physiological capacity of microbial communities in granite boulders (chasmoendoliths) and soils of a m...
Article
Full-text available
Global warming is causing ice retreat in glaciers worldwide, most visibly over the last few decades in some areas of the planet. One of the most affected areas is the region of Tierra del Fuego (southern South America). Vascular plant recolonisation of recently deglaciated areas in this region is initiated by Gunnera magellanica, which forms symbio...

Questions

Questions (5)
Question
Hi there, sage people.
I am a researcher with experience in 16S rRNA 454 and Illumina sequencing, but I want to go one step beyond and learn (if possible, by myself) how to carry out complete genome sequencing analyses.
Could anyone recommend me any server/tutorial/book/handbook/review to start from the very first step (i.e. sequenicng basis) with true metagenomic analyses?
Thanks
Miguel Ángel
Question
Anyone knows if there exists any database to upload/download the results of a metaproteomic analysis just in the way it is done for DNA amplicons sequencig (e.g. SRA)??
Thanks a lot
Question
Hello there. I have a list of proteins from a metaproteomic study (most of them belonging to prokaryotes) and I want to "Blast" them against a database to obtain Gene Onthology information.
I am using Blast2GO software, which allow selecting different reference databases (NCBI, Swissprot, refseqs...), and I was wondering if there is one databse that is better than the others to do what I want.
Thanks
Question
Hello there!
We have been working on sequencing proteins from different sampling points, located a few kilometers away one from another. Now we want to make an analysis to see if there is any significant difference in these and environmental factors among the sampling points due to their geographical location (distances among sites), but we do not know which method use.
I think that any method that should apply for DNA sequences will work on protein data, am I wrong? BTW, we are working with Metaproteomics data.
Thanks a lot
Question
Does anyone know the best data repository to upload Supporting information (PDF) from a microbial ecology paper just accepted for publication?
All the repositories I have visted are for data (e.g. FASTA files...), but I haven't found any for figures and tables.
Thanks a lot

Projects

Project (1)
Project
Find biomarkers in terrestrial Mars analogues using metagenomic, metaproteomic and microbiological techniques.