Dr. Ryosuke Saito (currently Miyagi Prefectural Government) and Professor Kunio Kaiho of the Department of Geography, Graduate School of Science, Tohoku University discovered new molecular fossils of archaea in the strata of China about 2 million years ago.

 All living things on the earth are taxonomically classified into three types: eubacteria, archaea, and eukaryotes.According to research using a molecular clock, archaea were born around 38 billion years ago, but since their molecular fossils were rarely found 38 billion to 2 million years ago, the biomass of archaea is in the first place. It was not known if it was low or if it could not be found because the archaeal biomass was broken down and not left.

 This time, the group will collect sedimentary rock samples from sedimentary rocks deposited about 2 million years ago in China, perform organic analysis of the sedimentary rocks, and perform bifitans with a ring structure and their diagenetic products. I found.It also contained previously undiscovered diagenetic products (new molecular fossils of archaea).

 In this study, we have shown a new method for identifying these organic molecules using a more universal mass spectrometer instead of the special mass spectrometer used in the previous research. It is expected that further research will be conducted on the distribution of paleobacteria that existed in the area older than 2 million years.

Paper information:[Organic Geochemistry]: Tentative identification of diagenetic products of cyclic biphytanes in sedimentary rocks from the uppermost Permian and Lower Triassic

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