communities of mosses, trees, insects and corals, among others, distributed throughout the world These findings can have profound implications for understanding the formation of ecological communities. Among its applications, experts highlight conservation planning or even the study of human diseases related to the intestinal microbiome, “where the coexistence of species is essential.” “However, the specific interactions and mechanisms that allow rare species associations are still unknown, which should also drive a new research agenda in various fields of life sciences,” the researchers acknowledge.Phosphate is essential for life, found in the backbone of molecules like DNA and RNA. Until now, however, the availability of phosphate at the

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beginning of Earth’s history was believed to be low or zero, China Phone Number List  because this chemical element forms insoluble minerals. This characteristic created a conceptual barrier: how could phosphate, which is insoluble and does not react, could be incorporated into other compounds to be part of the origin of life? This question was called “the phosphate problem” and was one of the questions to be solved in the study of the origin of life. An investigation directed by the professor of the University of Alcalá César Menor Salván, a

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s part of the scientific team of the NSF-NASA Center for Chemical Evolution (CCE) in Atlanta (USA), shows that cyanide and urea, precursors of The components of RNA and DNA, which were abundant in the primitive Earth, couldalso be responsible for the alteration of rocks and the formation of new minerals, in a chemical weathering process completely different from the one that currently exists. This process can take place in a “small hot pool”, that is, shallow accumulations of water subjected to environmental cycles (evaporation, rain) and in which organic substances of terrestrial or extraterrestrial origin could be concentrated. These substances altered the rocks, allowing the mobilization of phosphate and its incorporation into organic molecules, forming nucleotides. Nucleotides are essential components of DNA, necessary for life to originate. “It is a curious irony of fate that cyanide, a lethal toxic to many life forms, was one of the key components in its origin,” says Menor-

 

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