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Thursday, December 2, 2010

Possibilities for Alien Life


Hello Troops,
A bit of scientific news I found interesting about arsenic eating bacterium. This discovery means that life is more robust than previously thought. This means that life is capable of taking hold in more hostile environments.

My personal opinion, I believe life is abundant in the universe. I believe where ever we find liquid water we will also find life.

What an exciting time to be alive. We are lucky.

Mr. W.

And now the article.

Possibilities for Alien Life
By Henry Bortman
Astrobiology Magazine

One of the basic assumptions about life on Earth may be due for a revision. Scientists have discovered a type of bacteria that thrives on poisonous arsenic, potentially opening up a new pathway for life on Earth and other planets.

If you thumb through an introductory biology textbook, you'll notice that six elements dominate the chemistry of life. Carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen are the most common. After that comes phosphorus, then sulfur. Most biologists will tell you that these six elements are essential; life as we know it cannot exist without them.

The recent discovery by Felisa Wolfe-Simon of an organism that can utilize arsenic in place of phosphorus, however, has demonstrated that life is still capable of surprising us in fundamental ways. The results of her research will appear in Dec. 2 issue of the journal Science.
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