Frontiers in Bioscience-Landmark (FBL) is published by IMR Press from Volume 26 Issue 5 (2021). Previous articles were published by another publisher on a subscription basis, and they are hosted by IMR Press on imrpress.com as a courtesy and upon agreement with Frontiers in Bioscience.
Extremophilic microorganisms have adapted their molecular machinery to grow and thrive under the most adverse environmental conditions. These microorganisms have found their natural habitat at the boiling and freezing point of water, in high salt concentration and at extreme pH values. The extremophilic proteins, selected by Nature to withstand this evolutionary pressure, represent a wide research field for scientists from different disciplines and the study of the determinants of their stability has been an important task for basic and applied research. A surprising conclusion emerges from these studies: there are no general rules to achieve protein stabilization. Each extremophilic protein adopts various strategies and the outstanding adaptation to extreme temperature and solvent conditions is realized through the same weak electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions among the ordinary amino acid residues which are also responsible for the proper balance between protein stability and flexibility in mesophilic proteins.