A group of scientists in Canada have discovered the remains of some microorganisms. If they are biological, then they will be the oldest microfossils we have ever found at 3.77 billion years old.
Matthew Dodd, a researcher at UCL Earth Sciences and the London Center for Nanotechnology and one of the report’s authors, said this about them:
“Our discovery supports the idea that life emerged from hot, seafloor vents shortly after planet Earth formed.”
Dodd also said:
“If these rocks do indeed turn out to be 4.28 [bn years old] then we are talking about the origins of life developing very soon after the oceans formed 4.4bn years ago.”
Study’s lead author, Dominic Papineau, said:
“The microfossils we discovered have a range of traits that are similar to younger biological fossils. They have a twisted structure, a little bit like a corkscrew, and branching filaments. We don’t have the genetic information yet, but we believe they are non-oxidizing bacteria.”
If these are found to be biological, then this means that life developed on Earth a lot faster than originally estimated.
This is an exciting discovery for origin scientists. Luckily, Canada doesn’t have to deal with a science-denying government that we have under President Donald Trump.
Featured image via YouTube screenshot.