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Did silicon aid in the establishment of the first bacterium?

Wainwright, M., Al-Wajeeh, K., Wickramasinghe, N.C. and Narlikar, J.V. (2003) Did silicon aid in the establishment of the first bacterium? International Journal of Astrobiology, 2 (3). pp. 227-229. ISSN 1473-5504


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Silicic acid increased numbers of both aerobic and facultatively anaerobic bacteria in ultrapure water incubated under strict oligotrophic conditions; soil extracts acted as the bacterial inoculum. The results are discussed in relation to the possibility that silicic acid, produced by the hydrolysis of silicates on the early Earth, could have stimulated the growth of the first bacterium, thereby allowing it to become established in the then prevailing conditions (presumed to be oligotrophic).

Item Type: Article
Copyright, Publisher and Additional Information: © 2003 Cambridge University Press. Reproduced in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy.
Keywords: bacterial evolution, origin of life, panspermia, silicon microbiology
Institution: The University of Sheffield
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Science (Sheffield) > School of Biological Sciences (Sheffield) > Department of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (Sheffield)
Depositing User: Repository Assistant
Date Deposited: 25 Oct 2006
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2014 18:12
Published Version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S1473550403001587
Status: Published
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Refereed: Yes
Identification Number: 10.1017/S1473550403001587
URI: http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/1554

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