Indeed no water from the lake was collected at the time. An analysis of the ice frozen on the drill bit before they switched to the melt drill showed, perhaps as expected, no signs of life. They did find elements of drilling oil and lubricants, however.
The water that gushed into the borehole through the crack in the ice, froze in place and remained untouched until now.
"Initially, we saw completely unknown to us ice – an opaque, porous, bright white (ice)," explained Vyacheslav Martianov, the deputy head of the Russian Antarctic Expedition, to BSR Russia. "But 20 meters after that we saw transparent ice, with the white ice frozen inside of it."
By using the lake water as a frozen plug in the borehole, the Russians have managed to tap into what is considered the largest of Antarctica's known sub-glacial lakes, without, hopefully, contaminating it. Analysis of the ice will tell whether the ice is indeed contamination free and if any organisms from the surface of the lake found themselves frozen in history.