Life as we know it requires phosphorus. It's one of the six main chemical elements of life, it forms the backbone of DNA and RNA molecules, acts as the main currency for energy in all cells and anchors the lipids that separate cells from their surrounding environment. But how did a lifeless environment on the early Earth supply this key ingredient?
Life has faced many challenges as it has scrambled over this blue marble; many times, it has seemingly reached the brink, only to come back with surprising vigor. Now, researchers have finally figured out how living things could have survived a colossal glaciation event known as the Cryogenian Period.
In the search for the earliest life on Earth, it can be hard to tell whether you're looking at an actual fossil, or crinkles in the rock itself. Such doubts have long shadowed the 1980s discovery of 3.5 billion-year-old fossils in the Australian desert. Now, scientists think they have finally put the matter to bed.
Earth seems like the perfect hub for life because it's the only planet known so far to host it — but new research suggests that other planets could have oceans that are even more hospitable, offering life that is more varied than we know it.
A growing number of young people in Britain are fed up with their life, amid a sense of overwhelming pressure from social media which is driving feelings of anxiety and inadequacy, according to a new survey.
All the brain cells of life on Earth still cannot explain life on Earth. Its most intelligent species has uncovered the building blocks of matter, read countless genomes and watched spacetime quiver as black holes collide. It understands much of how living creatures work, but not how they came to be. There is no agreement, even, on what life is.