NASA Finds New Life

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NASA Finds New Life

Post  Static Jak on Fri Dec 03, 2010 11:31 am

LINK

Misleading to some degree but still amazing. Also, great that the first new form of life found and its POISON to us. Still do, it's opens up a whole new potential of life out there in the universe. No longer restricted by Earth like planets.

Basically, there's all kinds of organisms with phosphorous based DNA that eat weird things and metabolize chemicals instead of organic compounds, but this discovery is a genetic code consisting of arsenic instead of phosphorous as the backbone of the genetic molecule. The amazing thing going on here is that every organism found thus far on earth has had phosphorous-based DNA, meaning we all probably share a common ancestor, but this organism has an entirely separate DNA structure which is strong evidence for a totally separate abiogenesis event.
Pretty huge deal right there.
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Re: NASA Finds New Life

Post  CkSned on Fri Dec 03, 2010 11:33 am

Heard about this.

One step closer to the existence of aliens.
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Re: NASA Finds New Life

Post  Static Jak on Fri Dec 03, 2010 11:40 am

CkSned wrote:Heard about this.

One step closer to the existence of aliens.
Oh there's definitely "aliens" out there. I just doubt there's any hovering above us right now. Very Happy
In a Universe with hundreds of billions of Galaxies with each of those with billions of Solar Systems with multiple planets cycling those Solar Systems, we're hardly the only planets with living organisms.
Makes us look absolutely tiny but the way I see it, just makes for a shit load of exploration to discover amazing things out there.
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Re: NASA Finds New Life

Post  Open Circle on Sat Dec 04, 2010 9:38 pm

Oh I'm definitely excited about this.

For years we've been looking for life on planets based on OUR standards, meaning we believe that life can only exist if they match the conditions on which life was started here on Earth, mainly the existence of the "Big 6" elements: Phosphorous, Nitrogen, Carbon, Oxygen, Hydrogen, and Sulfur.

Interestingly, the reason arsenic is able to replace phosphorous in DNA is because arsenic is extremely similar to phosphorous, that's why arsenic is toxic to most organisms, simply because the cells mistake arsenic to be phosphorous and it screws up normal cell functions. I'm not a biochemist major (Im a microbiology major), but I'm willing to bet that if there are other elements that have similar properties to the other "big 6" elements, we'll have a better chance of finding life outside of earth. If we're lucky, NASA might take a look at places they previously thought that there was no life but does.
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