I think this is so awesome. That word is overused, and I'm guilty of overusing it, too---but in this case, I really truly mean it. This is awesome.
Some of life's raw ingredients may have originated in space, says a new analysis of an Australian meteorite that adds more fuel to the controversial theory. Researchers discovered the organic molecules uracil and xanthine in the meteorite and confirmed they could not have formed on Earth.We have cousins out there, roaming amongst the stars. Molecules, sure, but who knows where else they've been seeded, and what those seeds have grown into? Shivers.
These molecules, called nucleobases, are precursors to DNA, a set of genetic instructions for organisms on Earth.
"Emergent life systems may have adopted nucleobases from meteoritic fragments for use in an early and primitive genetic material, enabling them to pass on their successful features to the next generations," said study leader Zita Martins of Imperial College London.