Asteroid shows seeds of life
31 March 2023
Molecules crucial for the formation of life on Earth have been found on the asteroid Ryugu.
Analysis of the sample of dirt from the asteroid Ryugu, which was obtained by Hayabusa2, has uncovered that there are more molecules present on the asteroid than previously known.
Uracil, one of the four molecules found in ribonucleic acid (RNA), was detected by researchers studying the sample, as well as niacin, otherwise known as vitamin B3.
The team says that the discovery strongly suggests that such molecules of prebiotic interest, commonly formed in carbonaceous asteroids such as Ryugu, were delivered to early Earth.
The full study is accessible here.