Micro Life Zone
Asked by cookedchicken1 to Anissa, Eleanor, Mia, Sam on 4 Sep 2013.
Keywords: bacteria, evolution, origin, virus
Hey cookedchicken1! This is a great question, and one that scientists are still arguing about today! It is really hard to explain, but it basically comes down to there being a kind of “soup” that had all sorts of things needed to make the bacteria, and some special reactions happened that started the processes the bacteria needed to eat and grow! Now, some scientists are even saying that the first life on our earth even came from Mars!
This video is great and will give you a few extra things to look up, but really helps to explain it!
Cookedchicken1 Sam is talking about the Primordial soup here. We have chicken, we have soup, we have ourselves a nice dinner! 😉 Just being silly..sorry! now onto your question:
The origin of viruses is actually unclear because they do not form fossils, so molecular techniques helps us compare the DNA or RNA of viruses, This molecular technique can tell us about the origin of viruses.
There are three main theories that try to explain the origin of viruses. One hypothesis is about viruses just appearing from free floating DNA and RNA in the environment and then sticking together. Another theory looks into virus cells being parasitic cells, so cells that eat/destroy other cells but over time, they lost some DNA and became more virus like. And then there is also the idea that viruses may have evolved from complex molecules of protein and nucleic acid at the same time as cells first appeared on Earth. But really we don’t know which theory is most true!
Now Bacteria! Guess what? We have fossil evidence of bacteria (stromatolites) from Western Australia! GO AUSSIES GO! A long time ago (3 billion years or so) all organisms were microscopic, and bacteria were the dominant forms of life and probably still are! One problem with the stromatolites, is that the lack of the bacteria morphology ( appearance) prevents us from dating the bacterial evolution and the origin of a particular bacterial species. However, gene sequences can be used to reconstruct the bacterial evolutionary tree. 🙂 Its sort of what I do with my work! I mostly look at one bacterial group called Pseudomonas and I try to have a go at looking the origin of a type of DNA in this bacteria family.
But where did it all start? Probably in the soup 😉 I’m hungry now…please excuse me time for dinner!
By BRIDGE8 under license from Mangorolla CIC 2023