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NASA Finds New Life Form on Earth

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Published on Dec 2, 2010

"NASA's anticipated press conference today did announce the existence of new life. No, it's not E.T.; but it is a revolutionary finding. Up until now, scientists would say that six elements were absolutely necessary for life to exist: carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, phosphorus and sulfur. Dr. Felisa Wolfe-Simon, a NASA astrobiology fellow at the United States Geological Survey has broadened that list, as evidenced by her research revealed today.

Here's how... The key element of phosphorus is what links the backbone of DNA together. Arsenic sits just beneath phosphorus on the periodic table of elements, and it is toxic to life.

However, Dr. Wolfe-Simon found an organism that actually learned to cope with arsenic. Taking mud bacteria samples from the bottom of Mono Lake in California, she gradually fed the life form arsenic. To her surprise, the experiment did not kill the organism. Instead, she suggests, it incorporated the element into it's phosphorus lifestyle. Columbia University Astrobiologist Caleb Scharf compares this adaptation to ""if you or I morphed into fully functioning cyborgs after being thrown into a room of electronic scrap with nothing to eat"".

The findings have a relationship with NASA's search for life in space because it expands the scope of what possible life conditions to look for in other worlds. "

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