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Thread: Arsenic based life form discovered

  1. #1

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    Arsenic based life form discovered

    Surely other Bio-enthusiasts like myself have already heard/read the news but it's definitely worth repeating. Arsenic, once considered a lethal element to life forms, has been found to be a basic building block for this bacteria. In times when phosphorus is not in abundance, these microbes are able to alter their DNA phosphate backbone and substitute it with arsenic.
    Surely more extremophiles will further be discovered in deep ocean vents or other extreme environments like these.

    What personally fascinates me is the organisms ability to voluntarily alter it's DNA BACKBONE. Unless I'm grossly ignoring some other organisms this is the first of it's kind but I'd be willing to bet not the last. These kinds of findings just enlarge the possibility that life forms may exist on other planets in environments once deemed 'unsuitable'. Looks like 'Alien' life forms are much closer to us than we thought

  2. #2
    kahnli's Avatar
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    I was just reading about that myself.... fascinating!
    Sturgeon's Law:
    "Nothing is always absolutely so".

  3. #3
    Not Growing Up! GrowinOld's Avatar
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    Very cool French!
    It is nice that we have an opportunity here on earth to see a small sampling of how amazing life can be! It is also good to know that people now can be aware enough to see and understand different forms of life a bit better. It seemed a bit arrogant for people to believe that just because we are created the way we are, that it is the only way for life forms to exist. As you point out, even here on earth we have discovered life forms vastly different from ourselves.

    Personally, to think that we are the only life forms (or that all life forms are based the same way we are) is a bit short sighted. In a "universe" as huge as the one we find ourselves, the potential for lifeforms dramatically different then the ones we know seems logical. To believe otherwise is to severely under-appreciate the magnitude of just how large and diverse the universe really is, as well as under-estimate how truly amazing and adaptive that "life" and its resulting lifeforms really are.

    Nice find French! Very interesting!
    Seems the sun and planets and stars do not revolve around us after all!
    Experience is the best teacher. At least it used to be.
    But then, common sense isn't so common anymore, is it.

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