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NASA finds a new form of DNA in search of another's life



NASA-funded scientists have developed a new type of DNA-like structure that can store and transmit information – and may lead to new ways to find alien life.

A breakthrough discovery suggests that there may be alternative, unthinkable forms of life based on DNA, as we know it on Earth. Life in other worlds can be built using various molecular systems that researchers have developed in the laboratory, suggested by NASA experts.

A new molecular system will allow scientists who are looking for life elsewhere in the universe to rethink that


DNA is a complex molecule that allows genetic information that makes us, who we are, stored and then transmitted. This information is transmitted from parents to descendants in every living creature on Earth, and allows life to grow and flourish.

It consists of four different ingredients, which scientists call nucleotides and are common to all life on our planet. .

The representation of life forms that can use different structures – and the development of ways to detect them – is the central part of NASA's work. A new project that not only provided, but also created such a molecule.

"Detection of life is an increasingly important mission of NASA's planetary science missions, and this new work will help us develop effective tools and experiments that will expand the scope we are seeking," said Laurie Glaz, executive director of the Planetary Science NASA's Department.

A new study has shown that scientists are creating a new type of molecular system that functions like DNA but has a significant difference. Instead of the usual four ingredients, it contains eight.

He has all four living on Earth: adenine, cytosine, guanine and thymine. But there are four additional synthetic ones that imitate the structure of the ingredients contained in the normal DNA.

Researchers call the new creation of "hachimoji" DNA – hachi means 8 in japanese, and moji means a letter. as our DNA, which meets the same requirements for storing and transmitting information.

This meant that the types of molecules that could store information in life on strange worlds could be equally different. differently than on Earth, at the most fundamental level, it means that the environments in which the earthly life could not live could be an unmistakable form of life.

"Including a broader understanding of what is possible in our instrument and the concept of the mission will lead to more inclusive and, therefore, more effective search for life outside the Earth," said Mary Wojtek, a senior fellow at astrobiology at NASA headquarters. 9177]
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