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Latest Breathing gases Stories

2008-03-11 18:06:40

Stanford, CA -- A startling discovery by scientists at the Carnegie Institution puts a new twist on photosynthesis, arguably the most important biological process on Earth. Photosynthesis by plants, algae, and some bacteria supports nearly all living things by producing food from sunlight, and in the process these organisms release oxygen and absorb carbon dioxide. But two studies by Arthur Grossman and colleagues*+ reported in Biochimica et Biophysica Acta and Limnology and Oceanography...

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2007-10-04 09:45:00

NASA-funded astrobiologists have found evidence of oxygen present in Earth's atmosphere earlier than previously known, pushing back the timeline for the rise of oxygen in the atmosphere. Two teams of researchers report that traces of oxygen appeared in Earth's atmosphere from 50 to 100 million years before what is known as the Great Oxidation Event. This event happened between 2.3 and 2.4 billion years ago, when many scientists think atmospheric oxygen increased significantly from the...

2007-09-28 12:17:27

WASHINGTON -- Oxygen, key to life on Earth today, began to appear on the planet millions of years earlier than scientists had thought, new research indicates. An analysis of a deep rock core from Australia indicates the presence of at least some oxygen 50 million to 100 million years before the great change when the life-giving element began rising to today's levels, according to two papers appearing in Friday's edition of the journal Science. Previously, the earliest indications of oxygen...

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2007-09-13 18:04:29

University Park, Pa. -- A switch from predominantly undersea volcanoes to a mix of undersea and terrestrial ones shifted the Earth's atmosphere from devoid of oxygen to one with free oxygen, according to geologists. "The rise of oxygen allowed for the evolution of complex oxygen-breathing life forms," said Lee R. Kump, professor of geoscience, Penn State. Before 2.5 billion years ago, the Earth's atmosphere lacked oxygen. However, biomarkers in rocks 200 million years older than that period,...

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2006-11-30 11:03:53

Two and a half billion years ago, when our evolutionary ancestors were little more than a twinkle in a bacterium's plasma membrane, the process known as photosynthesis suddenly gained the ability to release molecular oxygen into Earth's atmosphere, causing one of the largest environmental changes in the history of our planet. The organisms assumed responsible were the cyanobacteria, which are known to have evolved the ability to turn water, carbon dioxide, and sunlight into oxygen and sugar,...

2006-08-23 18:25:00

LONDON (Reuters) - Scientists may have to rethink accepted theories of how the prehistoric earth's atmosphere developed after new discoveries in ancient sulphur raised serious questions, researchers said on Wednesday. Up to now it has been generally accepted that the earth's atmosphere was devoid of oxygen for some 80 percent of its existence. "The popular model is that there was little oxygen in the earth's atmosphere before about 2.4 billion years ago," said Hiroshi Ohmoto of Pennsylvania...

2006-08-23 18:25:00

LONDON -- Scientists may have to rethink accepted theories of how the prehistoric earth's atmosphere developed after new discoveries in ancient sulphur raised serious questions, researchers said on Wednesday. Up to now it has been generally accepted that the earth's atmosphere was devoid of oxygen for some 80 percent of its existence. "The popular model is that there was little oxygen in the earth's atmosphere before about 2.4 billion years ago," said Hiroshi Ohmoto of Pennsylvania State...

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2006-03-28 06:45:00

It's common knowledge that humans and other animals couldn't survive without oxygen. But scientists are now learning a good deal more about the extent of our evolutionary debt to a substance that was once a deadly poison. Simulating biological networks in the presence or absence of specific metabolites, such as molecular oxygen, provides new insights into the evolution of life's chemical capabilities. This image of one such simulation was created by LLNL postdoctoral researcher Jason Raymond....

2005-09-29 19:21:29

NEW BRUNSWICK/PISCATAWAY, N.J. "“ The first, high resolution continuous record of oxygen concentration in the earth's atmosphere shows that a sharp rise in oxygen about 50 million years ago gave mammals the evolutionary boost they needed to dominate the planet, according to Paul Falkowski, Rutgers professor of marine science and lead author of a paper published Sept. 30 in the journal Science. Falkowski and his colleagues have measured the abundance of carbon 13, a byproduct of...

2005-09-29 15:54:30

WASHINGTON (AP) - Mammals, once tiny creatures scampering on the forest floor, grew larger as the amount of oxygen in the air increased over millions of years, a new study says. Today mammals, ranging from dogs and cats to elephants, dolphins and people, dominate the planet. It's a success story Paul G. Falkowski of Rutgers University and colleagues say was helped by the more than doubling of oxygen in the air over the last 205 million years. Their findings are published in Friday's issue of...


Word of the Day
cacodemon
  • An evil spirit; a devil.
  • A nightmare.
  • In astrology, the twelfth house of a scheme or figure of the heavens: so called from its signifying dreadful things, such as secret enemies, great losses, imprisonment, etc.
'Cacodemon' comes from a Greek term meaning 'evil genius.'
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