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Can multicellular life be sustained with gamma rays?

  1. Feb 22, 2016 #1
    If there are bacteria that can get their energy from gamma rays (thus thriving on nuclear reactors), can multicellular life do it too?

    If so, wouldn't that broaden the parts of the universe where life could arise?
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 22, 2016 #2


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    Is this true? Do you have a source for this claim? There are certainly bacteria that are quite resistant to ionizing radiation, but none that I know can convert gamma rays into useable energy.
  4. Feb 22, 2016 #3


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    I agree, I think there is a big "IF" in that first sentence. I've never heard of such a thing either. Ionizing radiation tends to do too much damage on the microscopic level to be useful. Maybe there's a mechanism for converting reactive oxygen species into useful energy?
  5. Feb 22, 2016 #4
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