1. The survival of spores of Aspergillus flavus suspended in distilled water and cooled rapidly to –70 to –75°C. was found to depend primarily on the rate of subsequent warming of the frozen suspension. Only 7 per cent of the spores germinated following slow warming at 0.9°C. per minute, whereas about 75 per cent germinated following rapid warming at 700°C. per minute.
2. Viability was dependent on the rate at which the suspensions warmed from –70 to 0°C. (subzero warming), but was not dependent on the rate of thawing of the frozen water in which the spores were suspended.
3. The logarithm of the percentage of germination appeared to be a linear function of the logarithm of the rate of subzero warming when spores were warmed at rates ranging from 0.12 to 1000°C. per minute.
4. The lethal effects of slow warming from –70 to 0°C. were more pronounced between about –20 and 0°C. than between –70 and –20°C. In the former range of temperatures, the percentage of germination decreased sharply as slow warming progressed towards 0°C.
5. Slow warming from –70 to 0°C. was more harmful to the spores than was a 1 or 2 hour exposure to constant temperatures between –70 and 0°C.
6. Slow warming was found to be more harmful than rapid warming when spores were suspended in horse serum, 0.16 molal sodium chloride, or 0.29 molal sucrose as well as in distilled water.