Szostak believes the earliest cells developed on land in ponds or pools, potentially in volcanically active regions. Ultraviolet light, lightning strikes, and volcanic eruptions all could have helped spark the chemical reactions necessary for life formation. Credit: Don Kawahigashi/Unsplash New evidence shows the first building blocks of life on Earth […]

New study shows exactly how the manner in which mitochondria divide has remained the same since evolution began. Cellular origin is well explained by the “endosymbiotic theory,” which famously states that higher organisms called “eukaryotes” have evolved from more primitive single-celled organisms called “prokaryotes.” This theory also explains that mitochondria—energy-producing […]

How ancient microbes created massive ore deposits, set the stage for early life on Earth. New research in Science Advances is uncovering the vital role that Precambrian-eon microbes may have played in two of the early Earth’s biggest mysteries. University of British Columbia (UBC) researchers, and collaborators from the universities […]

Princeton University researchers have found that nature has developed a backup method for converting atmospheric nitrogen into the nutrient form critical to plant growth and soil fertility. The researchers report that the process known as nitrogen fixation can be carried out by the metal vanadium in ecosystems — particularly in […]

Hyperacid, hypersaline and hot ponds in the geothermal field of Dallol (Ethiopia). Despite the presence of liquid water, this multi-extreme system does not allow the development of life, according to a new study. The yellow-greenish color is due to the presence of reduced iron. Credit: Puri López-García Living beings, especially […]

An artist’s conception showing spherical carbon molecules known as buckyballs coming out from a planetary nebula – material shed by a dying star. Researchers at the University of Arizona have now created these molecules under laboratory conditions thought to mimic those in their ‘natural’ habitat in space. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech Researchers […]

Ahmed Elnewishy, an associate professor at Cairo University, holds a femur bone sample from mummified human remains that was studied at Berkeley Lab’s Advanced Light Source synchrotron. Elneshy and Cairo University postdoctoral researcher Mohamed Kasem studied dozens of ancient Egyptian bone samples and some soil samples during a two-month visit […]

By creating protocells in hot, alkaline seawater, a University College London-led research team has added to evidence that the origin of life could have been in deep-sea hydrothermal vents rather than shallow pools. Previous experiments had failed to foster the formation of protocells — seen as a key stepping stone […]