Early 'Soda Lakes' May Have Provided Missing Ingredient Key to the Origin of Life

Early ‘Soda Lakes’ May Have Provided Missing Ingredient Key to the Origin of Life

by Laura Geggel, Live Science

This mineral was scarce yet necessary for early life.

The first life-forms on Earth needed a pu pu platter of ingredients to exist, but one of those ingredients, the mineral phosphorus, has long puzzled scientists. No one knew how phosphorus, one of the six main chemical elements of life, became plentiful enough on early Earth for life to burst forth.

Now, researchers may have the answer; lakes that thrived in dry locations on early Earth likely played a key role in supplying phosphorus, researchers wrote in a new study published Dec. 30 in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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