Research NewsLife on Mars

Martian ‘Microbes’ Cover Their Tracks

Science  04 Apr 1997:
Vol. 276, Issue 5309, pp. 30-31
DOI: 10.1126/science.276.5309.30

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HOUSTON--Scientists studying putative microbes in a martian meteorite are finding it surprisingly hard to prove or deny the idea that life once existed on the Red Planet. Researchers at the recent Lunar and Planetary Science Conference dueled to a stalemate on such questions as the temperature of formation of carbonate in the meteorite and whether grains of magnetite might be masquerading as “nanobacteria.” But they also suggested how new studies may settle the question in coming months.