Life on Earth could have originated deep at the bottom of the ocean: scientists have a theory

Dmytro IvancheskulNews
Primitive life on Earth could have formed in warm springs at the bottom of the ocean

Life on Earth could have originated in hydrothermal vents deep underwater. The discovery of these sources could help humanity search for signs of life on other planets.

This is stated in a study published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The details were provided to Talker News by the study's lead researcher, Dr. Silvia Holler of the University of Trento (Italy).

The mystery of the origin of life on Earth still haunts scientists. Back in the mid-19th century, Charles Darwin suggested that life on the planet could have originated in "some warm little pond", the so-called "primordial soup". It was a hypothetical warm liquid that contained all the elements necessary for the formation of life.

It is only known for certain that life on our planet originated about four billion years ago.

Now scientists suggest that life began somewhere deep underwater in hydrothermal vents. The researchers said that inorganic structures were found in these springs, which, under certain conditions, can include organic molecules and form primitive cell membranes.

"This work required the collaboration of researchers from different disciplines such as biochemistry, astrobiology, and geology. Alkaline hydrothermal vents have become one of the possible origins of life on Earth and beyond," Holler said.

As part of the study, the researchers recreated the conditions that could lead to the development of life in hot hydrothermal springs fed by the heat of underwater volcanoes.

Scientists have found that inorganic structures found in this environment may include organic molecules that form new hybrid organic-inorganic structures.

Such structures can support and promote the formation of primitive cell membranes that make life possible.

"Our work opens up many research opportunities. Larger libraries of compounds can be tested to create inorganic structures and new organic compounds to interact with them," Holler said.

In the future, the results of this work can be used for the reproduction of life on other planets or to improve the efficiency and accuracy of the effect of drugs on the human body.

Holler is convinced that further research "is very promising."

Earlier, OBOZREVATEL reported that an ancient meteorite changed the Earth and could have contributed to the emergence of life.

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