Did Life Begin As A Ocean-Sized Lifeform?
November 27, 2011 7:56 AM Subscribe
ONCE upon a time, 3 billion years ago, there lived a single organism called LUCA It wasn't the first life form but it may be the life form that gave birth to all life today. It was enormous: a mega-organism like none seen since, it filled the planet's oceans before splitting into three and giving birth to the ancestors of all living things on Earth today. The latest results suggest LUCA (last universal common ancestor) was the result of early life's fight to survive, attempts at which turned the ocean into a global genetic swap shop for hundreds of millions of years. Cells struggling to survive on their own exchanged useful parts with each other without competition - effectively creating a global mega-organism. Eventually, LUCA split into the three domains of life: the single-celled bacteria and archaea, and the more complex eukaryotes that gave rise to animals and plants (see timeline)
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