Questions tagged [life]

A process defining organisms that grow and adapt to stimuli while maintaining a state of organization and energy production and being capable of reproduction.

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How long can zooxanthellae survive on their own, after being expelled from coral after a bleaching event?

So many sites (and books and journals and such) discuss how long different types of coral can survive without their dinoflagellate algae (zooxanthellae), but... How long can the poor little symbiotic ...
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Newts in a rodent larder. Limits of regeneration? (NSFSqueamish)

Observation. In the Surrey woodland of southern UK mainland I chanced upon a piece of corrugated metal. Lifting it up I found a bare patch of soil except for what appeared to be a nest of dry plant ...
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Do plants originate from a single cell

I read the generalization that life originates from a cell, and from my understanding animals, they originate from a single cell, produced as a result of sexual reproduction. And then life begins to ...
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Is there any evidence or example of "trade" or "money" in single cell organisms?

Single cells (like bacteria or eukaryotes) are extremely complex "machines" which can take input and produce output, and generally just live life. The question is, is there any example of &...
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The very first living organism model

Can you advice me where I can find explanation, what was the very first living organism on Earth? I am looking for nicely explained material, preferably with some 3d models and animation, showing how ...
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Difference between live and dead body from atomic perspective?

Sorry if this is a dumb question, recently I have been interested in the question of how "life" should be defined and got a specific question: If we compare a live body of a person and a ...
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Atom or Cell? Which is the basic unit of life? [closed]

As it is said that everything in this universe is made up of atom and molecules and atoms is called the building block of matter. But then why the cell is called the basic unit of life, why not atoms?
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Why is movement of water through cell walls considered the apoplast and symplast pathway?

Why would the movement of water through cell walls be considered the apoplast and symplast pathway? I understand why it's considered the apoplast pathway (as the water is moving through a non-living ...
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Relation/difference between metabolism and cellular organisation

In the highlighted paragraph from NCERT textbook, they mention that cellular organisation is the defining property of life forms while metabolism without exception is also the defining property of ...
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5 votes
2 answers
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Are specialized cells considered to have life?

A common definition of life, including the one in Biology SE Life requires physical entitites to have the capability of being able to reproduce. A process defining organisms that grow and adapt to ...
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What is the name of this sea creature?

I found this creature on the beach in San Diego. It is 8cm long and the end to the right is the mouth. The underside is exactly the same as what is visible. What is the name of this species.
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Examples of things that are undefined in terms of living and non-living

I'm putting together a class on basic biology for kids and I will discuss living and non-living. I'm looking for examples of things which are undefined in terms of living and non-living, if there are ...
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Is this trial that reversed aging in humans worth taking seriously?

In September 2019 Fahy et al. published results from the TRIIM (Thymus Regeneration, Immunorestoration, and Insulin Mitigation) trial. Their stated goals were to investigate whether they could restore ...
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Why aren't viruses considered to be non-cellular life? [duplicate]

I have always thought of viruses as being non-cellular lifeforms. And no, it isn't just because of Wikipedia. I have heard that there are viruses that are so complex, that they are very close to being ...
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Have we found any other life form outside our planet?

I'm not asking about the possibility of formation of life on other planets instead has there been any real evidence of life(such as micro organisms or even very basic structures) that might suggest an ...
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Should consciousness be a defining property of living organisms?

High school students in India under the CBSE Board are taught that consciousness is a defining property of living organisms. This question lies under the topic of 'What defines living organisms?' ...
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life based on different elements [duplicate]

It is commonly proposed to look for life based on silicon, based on it's relative abundance and similarity to carbon. However, carbon and silicon are not completely interchangeable. The bond strength ...
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Has anyone 'broken' an organism and then restored it to life?

Has anyone 'broken' an organism, rendering it unable to reproduce, then repaired it and observed it returned to being able to reproduce? An example would be to restore the reproductive capacity to a ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Did the first cell self-replicate or was it multiple first cells? [closed]

We're almost sure by now that the first cell was born in a some kind of underwater vents environment which harvested all the necessary conditions for it to exist. However, did the first cell self-...
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Star-like organism seen in microscope

I found this strange star-like thing while observing a slide of onion root somatic cells. I don't know that it is; I even doubt if it is an organism. It has conical arms directed radially outwards ...
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Why can't a genetically sound human stay alive for an indefinite amount of time given all the ideal conditions? [duplicate]

I have read that even if we can control our food and lifestyle and keep things as ideal as possible, there are other factors beyond our control like effects from neutrinos passing through our body ...
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Can creatures that can see color in completely different visible spectrum exists?

From wikipedia - "The visible spectrum is the portion of the electromagnetic spectrum that is visible to the human eye." So humans can see the light from 400-700 nm and this is because our eyes can ...
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Could something akin to Cyanobacteria evolve on earth today or are all available niches taken for different kind of life to come to be?

The most basic form of my question would have to be: could new life form from molecules as happened with the first life on earth, here on earth? If not why not?
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What is Growth and how can we define it to be a defining property of life?

I was reading a book and it said that internal/intrinsic growth is defining property of life and not extrinsic growth as saying accumulation of dust on a book makes it a bit bigger, even if it is by a ...
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2 votes
3 answers
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Is reverse senescence/"anti-aging" actually scientifically possible among humans yet?

I have been very interested in this since I myself am interested in reversing my skin's aging/genes/damage/etc. I also am interested in volunteering any future genetic altering of skin quality. ...
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1 answer
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Is life deterministic in nature? [closed]

I am wondering, according to our current understanding, whether life is completely deterministic. To begin with, consider a single-celled organism, do we have any evidence of any single celled ...
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1 answer
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Why are Arabidopsis plant seeds being sent to the moon and not other seeds?

The latest Chang'e-4 rover brings an entire ecosystem with it, including Arabidopsis plant seeds and silkworms. My question is: why Arabidopsis? Is this question conclusive without having to ask ...
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Light/Heavy Isotopes in Living Organisms

I was wondering, why are lighter isotopes (e.g. carbon-12 as opposed to carbon-13) preferentially used by life on Earth? Is their increased stability the only factor? Thanks in advance!
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Why are the cells the smallest unit of life? [closed]

Please Tell me why the cells are called the smallest unit of life. According to me I know that they are called so because they are smallest entity which is alive that is they show the properties of ...
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Can something like McDonalds be considered a life form?

"The current definition is that organisms are open systems that maintain homeostasis, are composed of cells, have a life cycle, undergo metabolism, can grow, adapt to their environment, respond to ...
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13 votes
6 answers
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Why are there not two trees of life?

Life on earth started an estimated 3.8 billion years ago, very soon (in geological time) after the earth’s surface cooled to become solid and the first oceans formed. Nowadays, we believe that all ...
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Lifeless Lake in Siberia

There is a lake in Siberia called Lake Pustoye. No life exists in the lake. There are no fishes and no plants and even trees around the lake die . No birds even visit this lake .The lake even has ...
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How is mankind important to nature? [closed]

Like mosquito eggs are important for fish, what’s our role in balancing the life on earth or its ecosystem. Please suggest if this question doesn't fit in this community. I am a mechanical engineer ...
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1 answer
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Why do living things go belly up as they die? [closed]

I have seen birds, lizards, frogs, fish, etc in various places on their back dead. May be insecticides cause them to flip over but I do not believe every upside down creature died by poison as stated ...
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Why is a cellular structure necessary to satisfy the definition of alive? [duplicate]

I was looking at this image and reading through the Wikipedia page for viruses and it says that to satisfy the definition of "being alive" the organism must have a cellular structure, but it seems to ...
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2 answers
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Which life is supported in sterilized 100% pure water? [closed]

As sterilized 100% pure water does not contain any mineral and ion, so which type life can survive in sterilized 100% pure water?
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1 answer
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How have single-celled organisms learned to survive?

Upfront: I am a computer science student trying to understand evolution and its implications. I've been pondering the concepts of evolution for some time, especially related to neuroscience / how ...
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New evidence about the beginning of life? [closed]

The cover story of the August Scientific American is about new evidence suggesting "volcanic pools" as the location for "first life" as opposed to deep sea smokers like "The Lost City". I was under ...
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2 votes
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What would it take to create life? [closed]

Assume we know the right DNA sequence of Mycoplasma Genitalium (MG) and we would like to create Life from scratch. Also assume that matter has been created and we have the knowledge base as today. ...
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How many genes are needed for a living organism? [duplicate]

I am interested in this question as I'm doing research into early life on earth which is believed to have been single-celled. Therefore, by extension, it seems only logical that the first life would ...
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Synthetic life creation - status of attempts

First I apologize for my incorrect English and for lack of modern knowledge regarding the subject (I studied biology a long time ago). I'm interested to find out: if there were successful attempts ...
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2 votes
3 answers
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Why has life evolved around oxygen? [closed]

Why has life evolved around oxygen? Many lifeforms require oxygen to breakdown bio-molecules and release energy. I think there are two possibilities: Reactions with oxygen tend to release more energy,...
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What is the philosophical definition of life? [closed]

How does philosophy define life? And how does it overlap and contrast with the concepts and nuances of other sciences such as biology, chemistry, physics and mathematics?
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2 votes
3 answers
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Is designing alien life still just science fiction?

As we continue to search for life in very different environments than the earth, it would make sense to me to think about and design lifeforms (theoretical) that could work in these environments. I ...
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2 answers
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Do we know the physical-nature of "senses" or qualia? [closed]

We have a peculiar property/ phenomenon called having 'sense' or qualia, also sometimes called as consciousness. Such as, if we see a red flower; we perceive a particular colour, "red". That is an ...
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10 votes
4 answers
2k views

Why don't we see life form again and over again?

If life formed on earth by natural laws, why can't we observe the formation of life from matter today? Is it because this is a rare phenomenon? It seems just after formation of earth life formed on ...
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Single celled organism and immortality

My biology book says: No individual is immortal,except single celled organisms.. I think that such conclusion aries from the necessity of binary division in many single celled organism to ...
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9 votes
2 answers
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Are all cells organisms?

As the title says, are all cells organisms? Why or why not? As I understand, not every cell is an organism because some of them -those which aren't organism- require the rest of the organism to live. ...
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5 answers
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How did the cardiovascular system evolve?

How has evolution created our blood, lungs and the heart? We can't exist without blood, which transports the oxygen to all areas of our body. However, the blood needs a lung, which gives it the ...
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How did life survive in the Snowball Earth theory?

There is this theory that says that the whole Earth was once covered with snow and ice. How was it possible for life to survive this extreme state?
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