Glycoproteins as Biological Antifreeze Agents in Antarctic Fishes

Science. 1971 Jun 11;172(3988):1152-5. doi: 10.1126/science.172.3988.1152.


The blood serums of Antarctic fishes freeze at -2 degrees C, which is approximately 1 degrees C below the melting points of their serums. This thermal hysteresis is due to the influence of serum glycoproteins. The temperatures of freezing and melting of aqueous solutions of the purified glycoproteins suggest that this thermal hysteresis results from the adsorption of the glycoprotein molecule onto the surface of ice crystals.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antarctic Regions
  • Body Temperature*
  • Fishes*
  • Freezing*
  • Glycoproteins / blood*


  • Glycoproteins