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4.2 Billion Year Old Fossil Unearthed May Be Evidence of Life on Mars

Nick Southern, News Reporter

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Scientists have been taken aback by a newly discovered bacteria in the frigid region of Quebec, Canada; the bacteria is hundreds of millions of years older than previously found fossils and may provide proof that there was once life on Mars.

This new bacteria is made up of iron oxide, with tiny tubes and filaments jutting out from it in order to feed on the iron rich oceans that dominated earth billions of years ago.

Scientists from around the globe have been speculating about the implications of this discovery, and they all have agreed that the fossils may prove life on Mars was a reality.

“If these rocks do indeed turn out to be 4.28 [billion years old], then we are talking about the origins of life developing very soon after the oceans formed 4.4 billion years ago,” said Matthew Dodd, the first author of the research from University College, London.

Previous research on the origins of life on Earth has suggested that it started 3.7 billion years ago, with the oldest fossils found in Western Australia dating life back to 3.4 billion years.

With the discovery of this new bacteria, it could be proof that there was life forming as early as 4.5 billion years ago, only 100 years after the formation of earth.

Researchers say that the beginnings of life on Earth would have directly coincided with life on Mars, starting at about the same time.

“It also becomes ever more likely, that such life must surely have had existed on early Mars. If life then spread to Earth cannot be argued with these findings which state more about how quickly life can form on a planet, just millions of years after its formation,” said  Space Expert Dr. Dan Brown of Nottingham Trent University.

In addition, new water discoveries on Mars have made the idea that there may be life elsewhere in space a not-so-distant reality.

Since it is now known that life can develop very soon after a planet’s formation, movies like The Martian may be closer to the truth than previously thought.

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4.2 Billion Year Old Fossil Unearthed May Be Evidence of Life on Mars