Several billion years ago, the world was born and from there life started to emerge. Recently, scientists have discovered microscopic fossils which have their cellular structures intact found from 992-million-year-old rocks. They’re still trying to determine what the organisms are exactly but they believe them to be eukaryotic algae or cyanobacteria.
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The discovered cells (pictured top) are called coccoids, which refer to “unicellular, non-flagellated, non-amoeboid organisms, with a definite shape, in general but not always ovoid.”
While it’s impossible to conclude exactly what the microfossils are, Dr. David Wacey, a microbiologist at the University of Western Australia, and his co-authors think they are likely eukaryotic algae or cyanobacteria. That’s because these microbes are known to take up rare earth elements, which suffuse throughout the fossils.
(Image credit: Wacey et al./Scientific Reports)