lhr380
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Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Wed Dec 01, 2010 6:08 pm

One of the people I follow on twitter just sent this link out.

http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2010/nov/HQ_M10-167_Astrobiology.html

Wonder what is going to be said??
(The views on this site are my own and no one elses)
 
comorin
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Wed Dec 01, 2010 6:38 pm

Could it be this?

 
bill142
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Wed Dec 01, 2010 9:11 pm

It will be to confirm that ET did in fact possess the knowledge to phone home.
 
soon7x7
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Wed Dec 01, 2010 10:33 pm

I think NASA is going to try to prove that life really does exist on planet earth...Rubbish!
 
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nighthawk
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Thu Dec 02, 2010 8:08 am

Quoting bill142 (Reply 2):
It will be to confirm that ET did in fact possess the knowledge to phone home.

obviously didnt have an iPhone then   
 
jasp25
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Thu Dec 02, 2010 8:47 am

could it be that they found evidence of DNA/bacteria from the sample of dust they recently collected from a comet/asteroid?
-peace and chicken grease!
 
AustrianZRH
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Thu Dec 02, 2010 9:07 am

PREPARE!

They are here!
WARNING! The post above should be taken with a grain of salt! Furthermore, it may be slightly biased towards A.
 
jasp25
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Thu Dec 02, 2010 9:12 am

SPOILER ALERT!

Looks like somebody leaked out what they're gonna reveal tomorrow. Don't click on the link if you want to wait until tomorrow.


http://dailycaller.com/2010/12/01/na...n-arsenic-loving-bateria-tomorrow/
-peace and chicken grease!
 
pwm2txlhopper
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Thu Dec 02, 2010 12:45 pm

Quoting lhr380 (Thread starter):
Wonder what is going to be said??

Most likely that they've discovered some single celled organism or bacteria on some planet.
 
soon7x7
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Thu Dec 02, 2010 1:05 pm

Quoting jasp25 (Reply 7):
http://dailycaller.com/2010/12/01/na...n-arsenic-loving-bateria-tomorrow/


Don't we already have this?...thought we called them...............................................politicians!?...
what a groundbreaking announcement. What a let down...I thought they were going to auction off the alien carcases from area 51 crash on ebay...
 
comorin
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Thu Dec 02, 2010 5:43 pm

Actually, having cells that do not need phosphorus and substitute arsenic is a HUGE discovery as it blows away our understanding for the requirements for life. Imagine a life form that can evolve without the need for traditional elements - amazing. It opens up the possibilities of alternate life forms elsewhere.

I would like to issue an APB for DocLightning to come to our aid and explain.
 
oldeuropean
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Thu Dec 02, 2010 6:35 pm

Quoting comorin (Reply 10):
Actually, having cells that do not need phosphorus and substitute arsenic is a HUGE discovery as it blows away our understanding for the requirements for life.

Yes, it's about this finding of bacteria in the Mono Lake. But some scientists already doubt the conclusions of Felisa Wolfe-Simon, because she hasn't proven yet, that these bacteria can live with arsenic instead of phosphorus (because it is a artificial condition produced in a labor) for a longer time.

http://www.zeit.de/wissen/2010-12/bakterium-arsen-leben?page=1

Axel

[Edited 2010-12-02 10:50:05]

[Edited 2010-12-02 10:55:12]
Wer nichts weiss muss alles glauben
 
connies4ever
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Thu Dec 02, 2010 7:17 pm

Quoting soon7x7 (Reply 3):
I think NASA is going to try to prove that life really does exist on planet earth...Rubbish!

You must mean trying to prove intelligent life existing on Planet Earth.  
Quoting comorin (Reply 10):
Actually, having cells that do not need phosphorus and substitute arsenic is a HUGE discovery as it blows away our understanding for the requirements for life. Imagine a life form that can evolve without the need for traditional elements - amazing. It opens up the possibilities of alternate life forms elsewhere.

Actually, an alternate form of life based on silicon rather than carbon has been theorised for some time, and provided lots of fodder for sci-fi writers:

http://www.daviddarling.info/encyclopedia/S/siliconlife.html

http://nai.nasa.gov/astrobio/feat_questions/silicon_life.cfm

http://io9.com/5020921/where-is-my-silicon+based-life

http://news.softpedia.com/news/Silicon-based-Life-50623.shtml

Silicon can do a lot of things, has a lot of thermal stability, but unfortunately (or perhaps fortunately for carbon-based critters) it does not appear to be able to form and re-form nearly as wide a variety of structures as does carbon.
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
 
comorin
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Thu Dec 02, 2010 7:35 pm

Quoting oldeuropean (Reply 11):

Thanks for the link.

The conference is going on right now and I am so overcome I think I will have to go lie down...

We are talking about a whole new Tree of Life. What will humans beings based on Arsenic look like in a million years?
 
Fly2HMO
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Thu Dec 02, 2010 9:23 pm

I'm still laughing at all the retards who don't know how to read still thinking they were actually announcing alien life.  
 
bohica
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Thu Dec 02, 2010 11:29 pm

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 12):
Quoting soon7x7 (Reply 3):
I think NASA is going to try to prove that life really does exist on planet earth...Rubbish!

You must mean trying to prove intelligent life existing on Planet Earth.

Beam me up Scottie. There's no intelligent life here.  
 
comorin
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Fri Dec 03, 2010 2:05 am

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 12):

I got up and read your links - much appreciated.

I'm bouncing off the walls as this is the biggest thing in Science in my lifetime. Please let me know if I am mistaken.

Again, paging Dr Lightning, Stat...
 
connies4ever
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Fri Dec 03, 2010 2:28 am

Quoting comorin (Reply 16):
I got up and read your links - much appreciated.

I'm bouncing off the walls as this is the biggest thing in Science in my lifetime. Please let me know if I am mistaken.

Again, paging Dr Lightning, Stat...

I'm glad you took a look. Like the NBC News motto: the more you know.

Not sure this is the greatest thing since sliced bread, but it is definitely very interesting. It does to some degree widen our "field of view" regarding extra-terrestrial life -- what it might be, where and how it could possibly exist and thrive, and so forth.

Now, if we could unequivocably demonstrate that there either is or was life on Mars (or Europa, Enceladus, etc.) then I think that would definitely rank as one of the most amazing things in our species' history. The impact on society, philosophy, psychology, religion, and on and on would be simply enormous.
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
 
Yellowstone
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Fri Dec 03, 2010 2:36 am

Quoting comorin (Reply 16):
I'm bouncing off the walls as this is the biggest thing in Science in my lifetime. Please let me know if I am mistaken.

You're mistaken.

Phosphorus and arsenic are pretty similar, chemically speaking (which is why arsenic is right below phosphorus in the periodic table). Both have 5 electrons in their valence shell, and both form ions with a -3 charge that have 4 oxygens bound in a tetrahedral configuration to the central phosphorus/arsenic. This phosphate ion is ubiquitous throughout biochemistry - among other things, it links together the sugars that form the backbone of DNA. Arsenate is toxic to most organisms because they try to use it in place of phosphate to make ATP. ATP stores chemical energy and shuttles it around the cell, but ATP made from arsenate is too unstable and so falls apart before it can deliver its energetic payload. Arsenic that's not in that ionic form is also toxic, because it binds to the sulfur in cysteine (one of the amino acids that make up proteins) and disrupts protein folding.

This strain of bacteria grows in arsenic-rich environments, so it obviously has a way to deal with this toxicity. It appears that it has evolved to be less sensitive to the difference between arsenate and phosphate, allowing it not to be poisoned if one is accidentally swapped for the other. However, while other arsenic-proof organisms might just discard the arsenate-containing biomolecules, it seems that this organism can actually still use them. If the cells are treated with solutions gradually containing more arsenate and less phosphate, eventually almost all of the phosphate can be replaced with arsenate, and the cell still functions (though not as well as it did before). However, as the researchers were unable to completely remove phosphate from the cell, it's not clear whether the cell is actually using the arsenate-containing molecules or if it's just using the tiny bit of phosphate that's left.

To use an analogy - imagine that you've built a carpentry robot that's designed to build chairs out of oak. One day, you run out of oak, so instead you give it balsa wood. The difference in density of the wood would cause most carpentry robots to screw up, but yours is able to use the balsa instead of the oak and still build a chair. Of course, it's not a very good chair, since balsa is a lot weaker. Replace oak with phosphorus, balsa with arsenic, and robot with cell, and that's the basic idea. It's nifty, but not earth-shaking.
Hydrogen is an odorless, colorless gas which, given enough time, turns into people.
 
comorin
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Fri Dec 03, 2010 3:06 am

Thanks Yellowstone for taking the time to explain - you certainly know your molecules! The thing about this that's exciting is the substitution of Phosphorus for Arsenic in the DNA itself. Was there a substitution in the ATP cycle too?
 
Yellowstone
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Fri Dec 03, 2010 6:15 am

Quoting comorin (Reply 19):
Was there a substitution in the ATP cycle too?

I believe they claimed to have found arsenic-substituted ATP, NADPH, and DNA. They did not show that the arsenic-substituted ATP was competent to participate in cellular function.
Hydrogen is an odorless, colorless gas which, given enough time, turns into people.
 
connies4ever
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Fri Dec 03, 2010 8:36 pm

Quoting Yellowstone (Reply 20):
Quoting comorin (Reply 19):
Was there a substitution in the ATP cycle too?

I believe they claimed to have found arsenic-substituted ATP, NADPH, and DNA. They did not show that the arsenic-substituted ATP was competent to participate in cellular function.

Some media articles on the topic at:

http://www.spacedaily.com/reports/Ar...ints_To_New_Types_Of_Life_999.html

http://www.nature.com/news/2010/101202/full/news.2010.645.html

http://www.cbc.ca/technology/story/2...hosphorus-wolfe-simon.html?ref=rss
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
 
soon7x7
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Sat Dec 04, 2010 7:54 am

Changed my life forever with this announcement...nice to know that if this administration gets re elected I now will have options of relocation. I do believe a sign of intelligent life WAS indeed found on planet earth, somewhere in the D.C. district...actually, that's all it was, ...a "sign" that read..."office of US intelligence". It did however turn out to be a mirage in a desert of vacuous humanity.
 
comorin
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Tue Dec 07, 2010 9:38 pm

Looks like the scientific community is in an uproar over the article - lots of accusations of poor methodology and less than stringent peer review. Oh well, nice while it lasted...
 
connies4ever
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Wed Dec 08, 2010 2:49 am

Quoting comorin (Reply 23):
Looks like the scientific community is in an uproar over the article - lots of accusations of poor methodology and less than stringent peer review. Oh well, nice while it lasted...

Remains to be seen who's in the right on this. Never underestimate the egos involved in the scientific world, and the lengths they will go to to either a) prove their assertion, or b) try to make the other guy look like either an idiot or a liar. Seen it for decades, it's almost like a soap opera.
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
 
Yellowstone
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Wed Dec 08, 2010 4:31 am

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 24):
Remains to be seen who's in the right on this.

Not so much anymore. There's three huge flaws in the paper's claims:

- They used a purification technique that doesn't remove arsenate that just sticks to DNA. Hence any observed arsenate could just be stuck to the DNA, rather than incorporated in it.

- The DNA didn't fall apart when it was dissolved in water as part of the purification process. Arsenate esters are not water-stable, so DNA with arsenate in it would break at the arsenate junctions. This DNA didn't.

- The researchers fully admit that their arsenate source is contaminated with very low concentrations of phosphate. However, those "very low concentrations" are still 300 times higher than those found in the Sargasso Sea, which has plenty of microbes living there. So there's no proof that the bacteria couldn't have just been living off of the small amount of phosphate that was present.

Here's a good, not-too-technical assessment of the current situation:

http://www.slate.com/id/2276919/
Hydrogen is an odorless, colorless gas which, given enough time, turns into people.
 
comorin
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Wed Dec 08, 2010 5:19 am

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 24):
Seen it for decades, it's almost like a soap opera.

I find it hard to believe that an august body such as NASA could be that wrong about something - I mean, NASA is right along there with Mom and Apple Pie!

Quoting Yellowstone (Reply 25):
Not so much anymore. There's three huge flaws in the paper's claims

Yes, I read that article, very credible. But I really wanted to believe...
 
connies4ever
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RE: Nasa Press Conference 02 December

Wed Dec 08, 2010 3:23 pm

Quoting comorin (Reply 26):
Quoting connies4ever (Reply 24):
Seen it for decades, it's almost like a soap opera.


I find it hard to believe that an august body such as NASA could be that wrong about something - I mean, NASA is right along there with Mom and Apple Pie!

NASA is as fallible as any other organisation.

Quoting Yellowstone (Reply 25):
Not so much anymore. There's three huge flaws in the paper's claims:

- They used a purification technique that doesn't remove arsenate that just sticks to DNA. Hence any observed arsenate could just be stuck to the DNA, rather than incorporated in it.

- The DNA didn't fall apart when it was dissolved in water as part of the purification process. Arsenate esters are not water-stable, so DNA with arsenate in it would break at the arsenate junctions. This DNA didn't.

- The researchers fully admit that their arsenate source is contaminated with very low concentrations of phosphate. However, those "very low concentrations" are still 300 times higher than those found in the Sargasso Sea, which has plenty of microbes living there. So there's no proof that the bacteria couldn't have just been living off of the small amount of phosphate that was present.

My chemistry is still pretty much 2nd year, so I have to defer to superior knowledge, but the Slate article seems fairly clear even to me.
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.

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