Nasa reveals bacteria that can live on arsenic instead of phosphorus

A bacterium discovered in a Californian lake appears to be able to use arsenic in its molecular make-up instead of phosphorus – even incorporating the toxic chemical into its DNA. That’s significant because it goes against the general rule that all terrestrial life depends on six elements: oxygen, hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, sulphur and phosphorus. These are needed to build DNA, proteins and fats and are some of the biological signatures…