Chinese scientist finds earliest known fossil of complex life, paper met with heavy criticism

A new discovery may place the first appearance of complex life on Earth a full billion years earlier than previously thought. The scientific community is divided on the value of the find, some hailing it as rock-solid evidence while others dismiss it as inconclusive.

Money can’t buy happiness the saying goes; but it does buy a longer life, Harvard replies

The richest American men may live up to 15 years longer than the poorest ones, and the richest women 10 years more than their poorest counterparts, a new study found.

Biological wheels and motors imaged for the first time

Morgan Beeby and his colleagues at the Imperial College London used electron microscopy to image these biological motors in high resolution and three dimensions for the first time.

If Moore’s law applied to life, then it should be 10bn years old. But the Earth is 4.5bn years old. Hum…

Some researchers have made an interesting connection: if you measure the complexity of life or how big the genome is you find it increases at a rate that seems exponential. It’s very similar to Moore’s law, which suggests the number of transistors over the same surface area on a chip doubles almost every two years. You can extrapolate both forward and background. Eventually, if you extrapolate down enough you’ll find the point of origin. In other words, it’s possible to estimate when life first appeared based on life’s complexity graph.

Glass in Martian craters might hold clues to ancient life

Sampling impact glass from the ancient craters that litter the surface for Mars might prove key to settling a long debate: did Mars ever harbor life? Researchers at NASA believe this is a great lead after the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) currently hovering above the red planet found deposits of glass. These were formed by impacts with large asteroids, whose blast trapped and preserved any matter it came across: dust, soil or any plants or bacteria (if there ever were such things). Cracking open these glass time capsules and peering inside could, thus, be one of the best places to look for.

Key findings help unravel journey from inanimate chemistry to life

In the beginning, the Earth’s surface was a lifeless, hot, but chemically rich place. In these harsh conditions, the first amino acids synthesized from inorganic compounds, and from them, proteins formed. They built the first single cells, which went on to form plants and animals. Recent research helped us understand the process that created amino acids, and there is a widespread consensus in the scientific community as to the path cells took to evolve to complex life as we know it today.

Microbial life found 2.4 km beneath the ocean floor – it’s the deepest marine drill ever

An expedition that drilled 2,400m beneath the seabed off Japan – the deepest marine drilling ever –  found life in cores brought back to the surface. The tiny, single celled organisms survived there without any oxygen or light, relying only on a harsh diet of hydrocarbons to make means. Because of the limited resources available to them, the organisms have an

Multicellular Life may have ‘cheated’ its way into Existence

One of the most fundamental question evolutionary biologists are trying to answer is how did multicellular life evolve from single celled organisms. Researchers from New Zealand, Germany and the USA believe they have found a counter-intuitive hint after studying organisms evolve in real time: cheating, non-cooperative cells may have pressured evolution to work on a program that would integrate two cell states.

Tracking the origin of life: computer simulation delves inside ‘primordial soup’

One of the most famous chemistry experiments of the last century was the ‘primordial soup’ project initiated by Stanley Miller. The chemist wanted to see what would happen if you mixed methane, ammonia and hydrogen – all substances readily available on Earth before life began – and zapped them with electricity, to create a phenomenon analogous to lightning which would have been

Living a happy or meaningful life – what’s the difference?

While happiness and meaningfulness often overlap, the two are distinct states of being. A Stanford project looked into the lives of various people inline between the two and found some key differences based on how people choose spend their time and what experiences they cultivate. The findings may surprise some of you, while others will choose to dismiss them. After all,

Origin of life a fluke? Study suggests more’s at play than just randomness

One of the greatest mysteries scientists have been trying to reveal is how inanimate chemicals  joined  to produce life. It’s definitely one of the biggest questions scientists are trying to answer, and the challenges are numerous since it’s very difficult to appreciate what the exact conditions necessary for this to happen were billions of years ago. We might never find

Fetal development from first cellular division to final stage [PHOTO GALLERY]

Child birth is a momentous occasion in all human cultures across the globe, and if you’ve ever witnessed one it’s easy to understand why. A new life enters the world, but the journey stars well before labor. Here‘s an incredible photo gallery showcasing a typical fetal development from ovary implantation to its final chapter.  

NASA slams alien life claims

Two days ago, the whole world was teeming with excitement, after some NASA researchers reported finding traces of alien life in meteorites; now, even their employer distances itself from them, and the whole scientific world seems to frown upon this work. However, in what is a very unusual move, NASA has denied any involvement with the paper, and even the

NASA scientists find evidence of life in meteorites

Wherever it’s possible, life finds a way; the old saying seems to be more and more actual these days, with NASA and other space agencies reporting interesting discoveries that point towards life existing in many more other places other than our own planet. After rewriting the biology books with the arsenic eating microbe, NASA researchers claim to have found evidence

NASA is stunned to find life beneath 183 meters of Antarctic ice

At nearly 200 meters below the ice, there is no light, the temperature is way below 0 degrees, and scientists were expecting to find nothing more than a handful of microbes – and for good reason. So it’s easy to understand why they were so surprised to find not a single (evolved) life form, but actually two such creatures. The

Stunning variety of sea life found in Antarctica

The British Antarctic Survey (BAS) published some quite awesome pictures showing that Antarctica isn’t the lifeless frozen wasteland most people believe it to be; ice fish, octopus, sea pigs, giant sea spiders, rare rays and gorgeous basket stars all thrive in the extreme temperatures in Antarctica’s waters. Well, thrive is perhaps a too strong word, but they’re doing just fine

Life had a big rebound following marine mass extinction event

In 1980, Luis Alvarez and his team shocked the whole world when they announced their theory that an asteroid impact that took place 65 millions years ago was responsible for the extinction of the dinosaurs and much of that time’s living organisms. Despite the fact that they delivered substantial evidence, there are still some minor gaps in the theory, and

Tiny frozen microbe could shine light on extraterrestrial life

A new bacteria that has been named Herminiimonas glaciei, found in the heart of Greenland, trapped under more than 3 km beneath the ice, probably holds significant clues regarding what life forms may exist on other planets, according to Dr Jennifer Loveland-Curtze and a team of scientists from Pennsylvania State University. They published this finding in International Journal of Systematic

Opals on Mars hint at planet’s wet past

As a proud student in geophysics, I can tell you that opal is hydrated silicon dioxide mineral with many astounding properties, but it’s also water hydrated. Since  water hydrated minerals have been found on Mars we are led to the logic conclusion that when these minerals was formed, there was water on Mars. Opals have been long prized for their

First sparks of life could have appeared from volcanoes

Jeffrey Bada is a researcher at Scripps Institution of Oceanography. He and his colleagues reanalyzed the classic experiment concerning the origins of life conducted by Stanley Miller who along with Harold Urey realized what we know today as the Miller-Urey experiment. This experiment showed that organic compounds can be created with no relative difficulty from inorganic substances. Bada was a