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Volcanism and Astrobiology: Life on Earth and Beyond

CGB researcher Nicola McLoughlin was a co-author of the introduction to the latest issue of Astrobiology.

McLoughlin is on the editorial board of Astrobiology. The Introduction states that:

"Any attempt to investigate the origin and evolution of life on Earth or elsewhere must include consideration of the link between life and its changing planetary environment. [...] Given that volcanism is one of the primary mechanisms that generate geochemical disequilibria and fluid migration at a planet’s surface or in its near subsurface, volcanism and life are inextricably linked."

It concludes:

"Collectively, these papers [in this issue] show that studies in extremophile microbiology, microbial paleobiology, life detection, and the origin of life intersect with the remarkable and diverse conditions found in Earth’s volcanic environments. Volcanic terrains are promising locations within which to search for answers as to life’s origins and to investigate the reasons for its tenacity on Earth and, potentially, beyond."

Read the whole Introduction.

Other CGB researchers are published in this issue:

Sulfur Oxidizing Chemolithotrophic Proteobacteria Dominate the Microbiota in High-Arctic Thermal Springs on Svalbard. by L.J. Reigstad, S.L. Jorgensen, S.-E. Lauritzen, C.Schleper, and T. Urich

and

The Potential for Low-Temperature Abiotic Hydrogen Generation and a Hydrogen-Driven Deep Biosphere. by H. Hellevang, S. Huang, and I.H. Thorseth

Access the entire issue.