Would extraterrestrial bacteria be dangerous to us?


by Dremmer
Tags: bacteria, dangerous, extraterrestrial
Dremmer
Dremmer is offline
#1
Dec10-12, 02:08 PM
P: 86
Would extraterrestrial bacteria be dangerous to us if we physically came in contact with such?
Phys.Org News Partner Biology news on Phys.org
Citizen scientists match research tool when counting sharks
Microbes provide insights into evolution of human language
First sex determining genes appeared in mammals 180 million years ago
mfb
mfb is offline
#2
Dec10-12, 03:53 PM
Mentor
P: 10,853
There was some discussion about it in this thread.
jim mcnamara
jim mcnamara is offline
#3
Dec10-12, 06:54 PM
Sci Advisor
PF Gold
P: 1,355
There is no good answer to this question. I'm sure people will say things - almost anything anyone can say is pure opinion.

If you stipulated a bunch of conditions the foreign bacteria had to meet then it would be more fun. IMO: It is probably true that they would have to have a lot in common with extant Earth life in order to be able to function in any way either helpful or deleterious.

What we really need is exobacteria that eat air pollutants and synthesize gasoline as a by product.... preferably exuded into ready-to-use tanks.

pumila
pumila is offline
#4
Apr8-13, 03:15 PM
P: 114

Would extraterrestrial bacteria be dangerous to us?


In terms of extraterrestrial bacteria evolved to be diseases of higher organisms, they are unlikely to be effective against earth life.

Bacteria evolved to live on specific substrates might not find a usable food.

Even a bacteria that uses a specific toxin to kill its host might not be able to replicate enough in an earth host to create a useful amount of toxin.

Essentially, a bacterium evolved away from the earth would likely struggle to survive on earth.


Register to reply

Related Discussions
Bacteria culture starts with 300 bacteria Calculus & Beyond Homework 1
Extraterrestrial Species Biology 43
Extraterrestrial life? Cosmology 31
extraterrestrial life General Discussion 7
Extraterrestrial Weapons Ban General Discussion 31