By the end of this century, says astrophysicist Martin Rees, we should be able to ask whether or not we live in a multiverse, and how much variety of the laws of physics its constituent ‘universes’ display. The answer to this question, says Rees, “will determine how we should interpret the ‘biofriendly’ universe in which we live (sharing it with any aliens with whom we might one day make contact).”
“Other important building blocks of life have been found in meteorites previously, including amino acids (components of proteins) and nucleobases (components of DNA and RNA), but sugars have been a missing piece among the major building blocks of life,” said Yoshihiro Furukawa of Tohoku University, Japan about the discovery. “The research provides the first direct evidence of ribose in space and the delivery of the sugar to Earth. The extraterrestrial sugar might have contributed to the formation of RNA on the prebiotic Earth which possibly led to the origin of life.”
The discovery of the language of life, an ancient, long molecule called DNA with eight nucleotide letters suitable for storing and transmitting information, was a breakthrough in our knowledge of the range of possibilities necessary for life on Earth and beyond. Now, new studies suggest that alternatives to DNA-based life, as we know it on Earth, may be possible on other worlds.
Occam’s Razor rules! A University of Oslo team discovered the most straight-forward and plausible explanation so far for the origin of life on Earth with the simplest assumptions.