DailyDirt: All Kinds Of Bugs Living In Outer Space?

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Panspermia isn't a crazy idea, especially when we seem to keep finding extremophiles that can survive in very harsh environments. The components of life may be traveling between planets or solar systems at a non-zero rate, seeding the universe with living materials. That said, life is still relatively fragile, but there may be some optimism in finding living specimens elsewhere than Earth. (First, though, we have to make sure we're not the ones contaminating our own solar system.) Here are just a few links on various organisms that might survive a trip in space -- without a space ship. If you'd like to read more awesome and interesting stuff, check out this unrelated (but not entirely random!) Techdirt post via StumbleUpon.
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Filed Under: astrobiology, et, extremophiles, insects, iss, lithopanspermia, microbes, panspermia, plankton, space

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  1. identicon
    DogBreath, 21 Aug 2014 @ 6:31pm

    Time to test out the Streptococcus Mitis therory once and for all

    Perhaps Streptococcus Mitis did survive on the Moon for 2.5 years.

    Reports of Streptococcus mitis on the Moon

    Countervailing evidence against the secondary contamination hypothesis is the fact that, according to Lieutenant Colonel Fred Mitchell, lead author of the original 1971 paper there was a significant delay before the sampled culture began growing: this is consistent with the sampled bacteria consisting of dormant spores, but not if the sampled culture was the result of fresh contamination. In addition, according to Mitchell, the microbes clung exclusively to the foam during culturing, which would not have happened had there been contamination. Furthermore, if fresh contamination had occurred, millions of individual bacteria and "a representation of the entire microbial population would be expected"; instead, only a few individual bacteria were sampled, and only from a single species.

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