Life began at sea, even the Bible says that. There was water before land and sea creatures before land dwellers. What it didn’t mention be that as it may, was that land dwellers came from the sea creatures. However a just concluded research was able to prove that the simple microbes found at the floor of the oceans were our real ancestors more than anything else.
The research was done on the seafloors of the Atlantic Ocean located in between Greenland and Norway. There scientists discovered microorganisms which according to them were the missing link that connects one-celled organisms that initially lived on Earth and emerged to more complex form of life 2 billion years later.
On Wednesday, the researchers revealed to the world a group of organisms called Lokiarchaeota, or Loki for short. They were recovered from an icy cold, hostile environment below the ocean surface near a vent system called Loki’s Castle, which was named after a Norse Mythological character.
The discovery contributes to the understanding into how the bigger, more complicated cellular organisms that gave rise to fungi, plants and animals, and humans too, a group identified as eukaryotes, evolved from the simplest forms of life, they said.
The Lokiarchaeota belonged to a group called Archaea which has rather simple cells with no internal anatomy not even a nucleus. The researchers have found however that both have several similar important gene characteristics, many of which has something to do with cell membrane function.
These genes, we could say, are responsible in providing Lokiarchaeota ‘starter-kit’ to support the development of cellular complexity,” said evolutionary microbiologist Lionel Guy of Sweden’s Uppsala University.
“Humans have always been interested in trying to find an answer to the question, ‘Where do we come from?’ Well, now we know from what type of microbial ancestor we descend,” said Uppsala University evolutionary microbiologist Thijs Ettema, who coordinated the study.
“Essentially, Lokiarchaeota represent a missing piece of the puzzle of the evolution from simple cells – bacteria and archaea, prokaryotes – to complex cells – eukaryotes, which includes us humans,” Ettema added.
The research appears in the journal Nature.
For more information please go to: http://in.reuters.com/article/2015/05/06/us-science-microorganisms-idINKBN0NR1YC20150506