Failure to recover Bacillus thuringiensis from the Lützow-Holm Bay region of Antarctica

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A total of 65 samples, consisting of 19 floral materials and 46 soil samples, collected from a coastal area of Lützow-Holm Bay on the Antarctic sub-continent, were examined for the presence of Bacillus thuringiensis. The frequency of samples containing aerobic spore-forming bacteria was 41.5% and most of the sporeformers were not allied to the B. cereus group. Only one sample from a floating mat of blue-green algae contained B. cereus-like sporeformers. However, there was no evidence for the formation of parasporal inclusions in these isolates. The result suggests that the natural microflora of Antarctica may lack B. thuringiensis, a mesophile widely distributed in other environments.

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