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One of the most fundamental building blocks of life on earth is DNA. This molecule consists of four base pairs and a negatively charged backbone that come together to form the double helix. If life existed elsewhere in the universe, would it use a different genetic information system? Recent work done by Hoshika and…

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Whether it is the acceptance of different passions, backgrounds, or even favorite movies, diversity matters. A group of ten researchers who noticed the positive correlation between motivation and academic success created the Ad Astra Academy to teach astrobiology abroad. They educated students from disadvantaged…

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How and why humans exist are questions that have challenged different cultures ever since the dawn of civilization. Many scientists have taken upon their shoulders the duty of answering these fundamental questions, coming up with several especially creative ideas over the past few decades.  One prominent idea is that…

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In recent decades the search for extraterrestrial life has seen major advancements in technology and methodology. The search for biosignatures on exoplanets around stars similar to ours has brought about new questions, such as: “How will we know life exists on another planet without visiting it?” To answer this…

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Since we are currently unable to visit some of the distant places in our solar system, we send probes to visit them for us. Only four spacecraft have visited Saturn, and for roughly 20 years some of the best data we had were images taken during the flybys of Pioneer 11, Voyager 1, and Voyager 2. That changed with the…

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Many organisms live by breathing in oxygen and breathing out carbon dioxide, and those that don’t often live by taking in carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen. However, did you know that these aren’t the only ways life can survive? Researchers recently discovered Sulfurimonas marinigri, a species of bacteria that…