Navigation Links
Sensitive laser instrument could aid search for life on Mars
Date:10/15/2008

n. But the INL team simply relies on the rock to act as the matrix, eliminating the need for sample preparation.

"We thought, what can the rock do for you?" Scott says. "You don't want to damage the sample more than you have to. You'd like to just shoot it directly."

With funding from NASA's Astrobiology program, the researchers have done previous studies showing that minerals like halite and jarosite yield distinct ion patterns when organic molecules are present. This time, they tried thenardite, a compound thought to be part of the Martian surface. Because thenardite is left behind when lakes dry up, its presence could signify the past existence of water -- and hence life.

The team tested thenardite samples taken from the evaporated Searles Lake bed in California. They also created artificial thenardite samples that contained traces of stearic acid, which is left behind by dead cells, and glycine, the simplest amino acid used by organisms on Earth. In all cases, the researchers found a distinct ion pattern that did not appear for thenardite alone, suggesting they had detected a signature for the biomolecules.

The team also measured the sensitivity of its instrument for the first time. By testing more and more dilute artificial samples, they found they could detect the stearic acid signature at levels as low as 3 parts per trillion. In fact, the signatures became even more distinct as concentration dropped, presumably because more ion-producing matrix surrounded each biomolecule.

While the instrument is too big to send into space, it could potentially be used for analysis if NASA brings Martian samples back to Earth. The INL study also could help determine which samples should be collected, based on how likely they are to show signs of life. Thenardite and jarosite look the most promising, Scott says, while hematite -- an iron-based compound common on the Martian surface -- has yielded poor results so far.

"The
'/>"/>

Contact: Roberta Kwok
Roberta.Kwok@inl.gov
208-526-2941
DOE/Idaho National Laboratory
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Caltech scientists engineer supersensitive receptor, gain better understanding of dopamine system
2. Sensitive nanowire disease detectors made by Yale scientists
3. For insulin sensitive overweight patients, 1 session of exercise improves metabolic health
4. More sensitive radiology monitoring in the Basque Country
5. Researchers develop new ultrasensitive assay to detect most poisonous substance known
6. New chemically-sensitive MRI scan may bypass some invasive diagnostic tests in next decade
7. Life under the laser
8. Laser fluorescence could find life on Mars
9. Argonne scientists use lasers to align molecules
10. Detecting dangerous chemicals with lasers, exploring the brains circuitry with light and more
11. Cleaner diesels thanks to laser light
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:9/18/2014)... tonight at the third annual Golden Goose Award ceremony ... infants and in paving the way for the telecommunications ... by the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of ... honored at a ceremony at the Library of Congress ... Congress will be on hand to help present their ...
(Date:9/18/2014)... of the fish world, are the ideal animal in ... They,ve moved from the ocean into tens of thousands ... time changing their skeleton to adapt to the new ... of sticklebacks now have turned up one of the ... simple change in that gene,s regulation in a freshwater ...
(Date:9/17/2014)... were instrumental in the creation of the Santa Ana ... the fire threat potential of the powerful, hot, dry ... an inferno. The index was introduced Sept. 17 by ... San Diego Gas and Electric. , The index includes ... will be used to help fire agencies and other ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):3rd annual Golden Goose award ceremony honors 8 researchers; Unusual work had big results 2Counting fish teeth reveals regulatory DNA changes behind rapid evolution, adaptation 2Counting fish teeth reveals regulatory DNA changes behind rapid evolution, adaptation 3UCLA scientists play key role in developing new Santa Ana Wildfire Threat Index 2
... December 12, 2012 Cell aging, or cellular senescence, ... to tumor development. Activated oncogenes are able to induce ... (OIS) could play a key role in future cancer ... in the regulation of OIS. This study is published ...
... plant dye once prized throughout the Old World to make fiery ... for a new "green" battery. Chemists from The ... and the U.S. Army Research Laboratory to develop a non-toxic and ... roots of the madder plant ( Rubia species). More ...
... engineering researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute shows, for the ... significant role in the strength of our bones. The ... fighting osteoporosis and lowering the risk of bone fracture. ... the study details how fractures in healthy bones begin ...
Cached Biology News:Previously unknown mechanism identified in oncogene-induced senescence 2Ancient red dye powers new 'green' battery 2Ancient red dye powers new 'green' battery 3Battling brittle bones... with broccoli and spinach? 2
(Date:9/18/2014)... 2014  Neogen Corporation (Nasdaq: NEOG ) ... agreement with Merck Animal Health to market Neogen,s Igenity ... Igenity Dairy Heifer Program consists of genomic tests that ... potential of replacement dairy heifers. The genomic tests can ... is an excellent tool in the decision-making process for ...
(Date:9/18/2014)... YARDLEY , Pennsylvanie, 18 septembre 2014 ... Lyon en 1974, a été ... à compléter les évaluations cliniques traditionnelles par ... Reported Outcomes) et sur les impacts économiques ... http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140618/119365 A cours ...
(Date:9/18/2014)... September 18, 2014 OMICS Group ... globe to participate in the ‘Open Access Week’ ... to OMICS Group Pharma Journals from ... of the fastest emerging Sciences, accelerating with a ... services across the globe. The industry is gearing ...
(Date:9/18/2014)... of rare diseases that afflict skeletal growth through ... at the fetal stage and is caused by ... fibroblast growth factor receptor 3 (FGFR3) has been ... dysplasia (TD), a skeletal dysplasia that cause serious ... and achondroplasia (ACH), which causes stunted growth and ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Merck Animal Health to market Neogen's dairy genomic program 21974 - 2014 - Mapi fête ses 40 ans 2Pharma and Omics Journals to Address Global Challenges during Open Access Week 2Pharma and Omics Journals to Address Global Challenges during Open Access Week 3Researchers use iPS cells to show statin effects on diseased bone 2Researchers use iPS cells to show statin effects on diseased bone 3
... Oramed Pharmaceuticals Inc. (OTCBB: ORMP.OB) ( http://www.oramed.com ... today that its work entitled "Evaluation of the Safety ... Volunteers" will be presented at the Eleventh Annual Meeting ... San Francisco, California. "The selection of Oramed ...
... 25, 2011 Reportlinker.com announces that a ... its catalogue: Global Automated ... http://www.reportlinker.com/p092467/Global-Automated-And-Rapid-Microbiological-Tests-Industry.html#utm_source=prnewswire&utm_medium=pr&utm_campaign=In_Vitro_Diagnostic This ... and Rapid Microbiological Tests in US$ Million ...
... some patients develop a potentially deadly blood infection from ... bodies have gene mutations that allow them to stick ... infections because of a biofilm of persistent bacterial bugs ... some strains of the bacteria, Staphylococcus aureus, have just ...
Cached Biology Technology:Oramed Pharmaceuticals Chosen to Present at the Diabetes Technology Meeting (October 27-29, 2011; San Francisco, CA) 2Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 2Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 3Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 4Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 5Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 6Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 7Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 8Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 9Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 10Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 11Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 12Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 13Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 14Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 15Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 16Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 17Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 18Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 19Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 20Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 21Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 22Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 23Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 24Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 25Global Automated And Rapid Microbiological Tests Industry 26Study offers clues as to why some patients get infections from cardiac implants 2Study offers clues as to why some patients get infections from cardiac implants 3Study offers clues as to why some patients get infections from cardiac implants 4Study offers clues as to why some patients get infections from cardiac implants 5
... Red Taq DNA Polymerase is a thermostable ... activity in primer extension and other molecular ... dye which provides easy and quick identification ... and allows confirmation of complete mixing. The ...
... Kit (E-22013) provides,researchers with a sensitive ... in solution. This fluorescence-based assay can ... (Figure 1). The assay,measures lysozyme activity ... labeled to such a degree that ...
RNA oligomers from 10 to 50 bases purified by PAGE and MS-checked. RNAs are supplied dried and fully deprotected....
... Analog) is used for the synthesis of ... transcription reactions. Substitution of cap analog for ... an in vitro transcription reaction results in ... a large fraction of the transcripts. Capped ...
Biology Products: