Navigation Links
Caltech geobiologists discover unique 'magnetic death star' fossil
Date:10/22/2008

chumann, a geologist and electron microscopist at McGill University and lead author of the study, "It was easy to focus on the thousands of other bacterial fossils, but these single, unusual crystals kept appearing in the background. It soon became evident that they were everywhere."

In addition to their unusually large sizes, the magnetic crystals occur in a surprising array of shapes. For example, the spearhead-like crystals have a six-sided "stalk" at one end, a bulbous middle, and a sharp, tapered tip at the other end. Once reaching a certain size, spearhead crystals grow longer but not wider, a directed growth pattern that is characteristic of most higher biological organisms.

The spearhead magnetic crystals compose a minor fraction of all of the iron-oxide crystals in the PETM clay layer. Most of the crystals have smaller sizes and special shapes, which indicate that they are fossils of magnetotactic bacteria. This group of microorganisms, long studied at Caltech by study coauthor Joseph Kirschvink, the Nico and Marilyn Van Wingen Professor of Geobiology, use magnets to orient themselves within Earth's magnetic field, and proliferate in oxygen-poor water.

Spearheads are not, however, the rarest fossil type in the deposit. That honor belongs to a spherical cluster of spearheads informally dubbed the "Magnetic Death Star" by the researchers. The Magnetic Death Star may have preserved the crystals as they occurred in their original biological structure.

The researchers could not find a similar-shaped organism anywhere in the paleontological annals. They hypothesize that it may have been a single-celled eukaryote that evolved for the first time during the PETM and was outcompeted once the strange climate conditions of that time diminished. Alternatively, it may still exist today in a currently undiscovered location.

"The continental shelf of the mid-Atlantic states during the PETM must have been very iron-rich, much
'/>"/>

Contact: Kathy Svitil
ksvitil@caltech.edu
626-395-8022
California Institute of Technology
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Caltech engineers build firast-ever multi-input plug-and-play synthetic RNA device
2. Caltech scientists engineer supersensitive receptor, gain better understanding of dopamine system
3. Caltech biologists spy on the secret inner life of a cell
4. Caltech scientists create DNA tubes with programmable sizes for nanoscale manufacturing
5. Caltech researchers awarded $10M for molecular programming project
6. Caltech engineers build mini drug-producing biofactories in yeast
7. Caltech neurobiologists discover individuals who hear movement
8. Caltech scientists awarded $20 million to Power the Planet
9. Caltech researchers find dual-use sexual attraction and population-control chemicals in nematodes
10. UNC, Caltech research finds further evidence for genetic contribution to autism
11. New $11 million center to speed production of new compounds for drug discovery
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:9/30/2014)... all have in common? Unlike most eukaryotic multicellular ... diploid, these organisms are all polyploid, meaning they have ... have 3 and 4 sets of chromosomes, respectively, and ... in fact most plant species are polyploid. Polyploidy, or ... but only recently, with the development of molecular tools, ...
(Date:9/30/2014)... professor and Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator, and ... recipients in the 2014 round of grants from ... BRAIN (Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies) Initiative ... September 30, provides more than $3 million in ... , The BRAIN Initiative, launched last year, is ...
(Date:9/30/2014)... of Medicine reports positive results of a phase ... subset of lung cancer marked by rearrangement of the ... with advanced non-small cell lung cancer testing positive for ... with 3 complete responses and 33 partial responses. Median ... disease to resume its growth after being slowed by ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Gene doubling shapes the world: Instant speciation, biodiversity, and the root of our existence 2Gene doubling shapes the world: Instant speciation, biodiversity, and the root of our existence 3Gene doubling shapes the world: Instant speciation, biodiversity, and the root of our existence 4Salk scientists receive $3 million for BRAIN Initiative grant 2NEJM: Crizotinib effective in Phase 1 trial against ROS1 lung cancer 2
... bites, and business struggle to stay primed, researchers in ... and business practice is needed if a company is ... Practice from Inderscience Publishers, the team explains how businesses ... Palmira Lpez-Fresno of "STIGA" in Barcelona is working ...
... An undergraduate student at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has learned ... help the medicine go down. In fact, with his ... Among the most important and complex molecules in the ... how cells communicate with one another. Graduating senior Jeffery ...
... discovery of the duck-billed, egg-laying, otter-footed, beaver-tailed, venomous platypus ... must be a hoax. Sketches of its appearance were ... that the oddness of the platypus, looks isn,t just ... avian, reptilian and mammalian lineages that may hold clues ...
Cached Biology News:Programmed death boosts business 2Undergrad has sweet success with invention of artificial Golgi 2Undergrad has sweet success with invention of artificial Golgi 3Platypus genome decoded 2Platypus genome decoded 3
(Date:9/30/2014)... , Sept. 30, 2014 FemCap Inc., ... health announces its receipt of a patent No: US, ... cup has also received FDA clearance in the U.S., ... the CE in Europe. This patent is related to its ... this issuance, the company is releasing FemmyCycle Teen, a ...
(Date:9/30/2014)... The custom stainless steel fabrication company HOLLOWAY AMERICA ... Boston Area Chapter of ISPE (International Society for Pharmaceutical ... Wed., Oct. 1 at Gillette Stadium Clubhouse in Foxborough, ... ISPE Boston’s long history, with more than 375 exhibitors ... , HOLLOWAY AMERICA President David Simpson is looking forward ...
(Date:9/30/2014)... Windsor, CT (PRWEB) September 30, 2014 ... distributor of scientific research products, recently opened an ... its comprehensive cell culture product lines developed and ... through its online store include Biological Industries’ Nutristem® ... (hMSC) and human embryonic stem cell (hESC) culture. ...
(Date:9/30/2014)... Whitehouse, New Jersey (PRWEB) September 30, 2014 ... that it has been chosen by the Parenteral ... course (November 18 and 19, 2014) on container closure ... current container closure integrity test methods and philosophies detailed ... Product – Integrity Evaluation. The course will ...
Breaking Biology Technology:The FemmyCycle 2HOLLOWAY AMERICA to Exhibit at ISPE Boston Product Show 2014 2HOLLOWAY AMERICA to Exhibit at ISPE Boston Product Show 2014 3Rainbow Scientific, Inc. opens online store for state-of-the-art stem cell culture and cytogenetic reagents 2Whitehouse Laboratories to Partner with PDA for Educational Course on Container Closure Integrity Testing 2Whitehouse Laboratories to Partner with PDA for Educational Course on Container Closure Integrity Testing 3Whitehouse Laboratories to Partner with PDA for Educational Course on Container Closure Integrity Testing 4
... April 13, 2011 Today Massachusetts Life Sciences Center ... officials,  Organogenesis, Inc. President & CEO Geoff MacKay and ... Dan Road.  Upon completion in 2013, the company expects ... cell manufacturing plant.   Organogenesis is in ...
... Biosciences, a global manufacturer of products designed to ... labor intensive, today announced an agreement with Bruker ... microbial identification from cultures using MALDI-TOF proteomic finger-printing, ... research, and veterinary laboratory customers. The compatible product ...
... published in the March 14 edition of the ... and testing of a new type solar cell using ... nanowires (described has "quantum coaxial cables") had previously been ... chemically more stable large bandgap inorganic materials, should also ...
Cached Biology Technology:Organogenesis, Life Sciences Center Break Ground on World's Largest Automated Living Cell Manufacturing Plant 2Organogenesis, Life Sciences Center Break Ground on World's Largest Automated Living Cell Manufacturing Plant 3Organogenesis, Life Sciences Center Break Ground on World's Largest Automated Living Cell Manufacturing Plant 4Magellan Biosciences Announces Agreement with Bruker to Provide Microbiology Tools to Battle Drug Resistance 2Magellan Biosciences Announces Agreement with Bruker to Provide Microbiology Tools to Battle Drug Resistance 3Magellan Biosciences Announces Agreement with Bruker to Provide Microbiology Tools to Battle Drug Resistance 4Device proves solar cell potential of high bandgap inorganic nanowire arrays 2Device proves solar cell potential of high bandgap inorganic nanowire arrays 3
... N,N- bis- (3-D-Gluconamidopropyl)deoxycholamide White ... CHAPS and CHAPSO. Has reduced electrostatic interactions ... chromatography on DEAE-cellulose. Aggregation number: 8-16. ... H 2 O. Aggregation number 8 - ...
... 2000 Pipette is a synonym for pipetting ... robust design, and superior operating comfort. Its ... the measuring stroke and blow-out as well ... system ensures utmost accuracy and precision. Ejection ...
... This protein is a member of the ... Members of the PAX family typically contain ... homeodomain. These proteins play critical roles during ... 3 are associated with Waardenburg syndrome, craniofacial-deafness-hand ...
Compact, portable device, seals 96 and 384 well plates with preset temperature optimised for Eppendorf heat sealing foils and films. Suitable for plates of different heights. AC input: 50/60 Hz230 V...
Biology Products: