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19 Oct 2017
W. Ford Doolittle, Professor Emeritus, Dalhousie University George E.Fox, John and Rebecca Moores Professor of Biology and Biochemistry and Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, University of Houston ...I think most molecular biologists did not seriously read the evolutionary literature, probably still donít. Mostly evolution is something you talk about in the last paragraph of the paper and I think, and over a few beers kind of thing because I think there was a general feeling amongst the molecular biological community that evolution obviously was important but also there is nothing you can really say about it so you could just say whatever you wanted and everybody would accept that politely. — W. Ford Doolittle, 2016 (pictured, left)
The Origins of the RNA World, panel discussion among Walter Gilbert, W. Ford Doolittle, George Fox (pictured, right) and Ray Gesteland, Library of Congress, 17 Mar 2016.
> The RNA World and > Introns: a Mystery are local webpages related to the panel discussion.

18 Oct 2017 What'sNEW about HGT |
Our results reinforce the idea of parasitoid wasps as frequent agents of horizontal transfers in eukaryotes. Additionally, this Helitron-bracovirus segment is the first example of a transposable element that effectively became a whole viral circle.
A Horizontally Transferred Autonomous Helitron Became a Full Polydnavirus Segment in Cotesia vestalis by Pedro Heringer, Guilherme B. Dias and Gustavo C. S. Kuhn, G3, online 17 Oct 2017.
> Viruses... has a primer and related links.

15 Oct 2017
The Eridania region in the southern highlands of Mars once contained a vast inland sea with a volume of water greater than that of all other Martian lakes combined.
Ancient hydrothermal seafloor deposits in Eridania basin on Mars by Joseph R. Michalski et al., Nature Communications, online 10 Jul 2017.
Ancient Hydrothermal Vents... Could Have Been a Cradle for Life by Matt Williams, Universe Today, 12 Oct 2017.
> Life on Mars! has more about water and possible life there. Thanks Thanks, Martin Langford.

10 Oct 2017
Unfortunately, with the exception of the two Viking landers in 1976, all other lander and rover missions to Mars have been in fact primarily geology focused, although they are often put forward as astrobiology missions.
Searching for Life on Mars Before It Is Too Late by Alberto G. Fairén et al., Astrobiology, online Sep 2017.
> Life on Mars! has more about Viking.

05 Oct 2017 What'sNEW about HGT |
The New York Times
Ancient Viruses Are Buried in Your DNA by Carl Zimmer, The New York Times, 04 Oct 2017.
> Viruses... has a primer and related links. Thanks Thanks, Ronnie McGhee.

Methyl Chloride in a young star system 400 light-years away.
03 Oct 2017
Astrobiologists have recently proposed to use Methyl Chloride as a biomarker — its detection in the atmosphere of an exoplanet would mean life is probably there. Now astronomers using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) see Methyl Chloride in a young star system 400 light-years away. Interestingly, it was also detected by the Rosetta mission, in May 2015, in bursts when comet 67P was nearest to the sun. Early detection of the molecule means to some, by curious logic, that it isn't a biomarker.

Protostellar and cometary detections of organohalogens by Edith C. Fayolle et al., Nature Astronomy, 02 Oct 2017.
Astronomers Discover Traces of Methyl Chloride around Infant Stars and Nearby Comet, The National Radio Astronomy Observatory (+PhysOrg +Newswise), 02 Oct 2017.
Biomarker found in space complicates search for life on exoplanets, European Space Agency, 02 Oct 2017.
> ...Interstellar Dust has historical information and links. Thanks Thanks, Chandra Wickramasinghe.
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