Microbial life already had the necessary conditions to exist on our planet 3.5 billion years ago. This was the conclusion reached by a research team after studying microscopic fluid inclusions in barium sulfate (barite) from the Dresser Mine in Marble Bar, Australia. In their publication “Ingredients for microbial life preserved in 3.5-billion-year-old fluid inclusions,” the researchers suggest that organic carbon compounds which could serve as nutrients for microbial life already existed at this time. The study by first author Helge Mißbach (University of Göttingen, Germany) was published in the journal Nature Communications. Co-author Volker Lüders from the GFZ German Research Center for Geosciences carried out carbon isotope analyses on gases in fluid inclusions.
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