Results of a recent study titled “Protein Oxidation Implicated as the Primary Determinant of Bacterial Radioresistance,” will be published in the March 20 edition of PLoS Biology. The study, headed by Michael J. Daly, Ph.D., associate professor at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USU), Department of Pathology, shows that the ability of the bacterium Deinococcus radiodurans to endure and survive enormous levels of ionizing radiation (X-rays and gamma-rays) relies on a powerful mechanism that protects proteins from oxidative damage during irradiation.
I thought it was pretty well established that the original adaptation was against drying out (where on Earth do you get so much radiation except in the nuclear facilities built by humans over the past few decades?). The multi-level DNA repair mechanism evolved to protect DNA from dessication would work quite nicely if DNA is danaged by other causes. So, is this new study right, or the old view?