Talk:GFAJ-1

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Clarify: Arsenic "based" vs arsenic capable[edit]

I was wondering if someone can clarify something. Terms like "Arsenic eating" and "capable of incorporating" can be interpreted two ways and so far I've not seen anything that makes the intended claim perfectly clear.

  • It could be the organism already had arsenic instead of phosphorus in it's DNA etc. while it was in the lake before she collected it, and increasing the arsenic concentrations in the lab just singled out these organisms,
  • or it could be that the organism used phosphorus in the wild, but as she removed the phosphorus and increased the arsenic in it's environment, the organism switched from using the one to the other.

I feel that this point is too subtle to trust second hand references. Does anyone know which the paper is claiming? --Yoda of Borg (talk) 00:27, 16 December 2010 (UTC)

It is in the introduction: "According to the authors, the microbe, when starved of phosphorus, is capable of incorporating the element arsenic in its proteins, lipids and metabolites such as ATP, as well as its DNA and RNA". Cheers, --BatteryIncluded (talk) 02:09, 16 December 2010 (UTC)
Indeed, it's the second point that's correct, but note that there was only ever evidence of partial replacement of phosphorous with arsenic; it certainly didn't completely replace its phosphorous. As for "arsenic eating", Facepalm. Bacteria do not eat. GiftigerWunsch [TALK] 14:23, 18 December 2010 (UTC)
In the FAQ document, now they specify that it may be able to incorporate "a very small percentage" of arsenic. — Preceding unsigned comment added by BatteryIncluded (talkcontribs) 15:09, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Electronic versus paper publication[edit]

(Comment moved to bottom by Squidonius)

Some "editor" believes that the fact that the arsenic bacteria article was never published in the print version of Science is not worthy of inclusion in Wikipedia articles. He appears unaware that this fact signifies that Science rapidly lost faith in the validity of the data. It is a significant component of an entry that an article published online has been withheld from print publication. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 128.210.44.60 (talk) 20:01, 24 March 2011 (UTC)

I took the liberty to move the comment by IP user 128.210.44.60 down to the bottom here. To whom I urge to not re-add the edit, which CanadianLinuxUser rightfully removed twice as it was an incorrect and out-of-place edit by a IP user, and to refrain from editing solely articles related to GFAJ-1 (the ip appears to be of Purdue University so cannot be blocked but can be followed).

Regarding the issue: Science has published the article online and not on print (ePub ahead of print) and the article has not been retracted. ePub is common (see [1] for list of article awaiting paper publication), however this article is the second oldest awaiting paper publication (given the distribution, it is several deviations out). Nevertheless, Despite being obvious that something is wrong, there is written nowhere in Science or elsewhere why Science has not published it on paper yet, so the edit involves an unreferenced personal referenced. --Squidonius (talk) 21:13, 24 March 2011 (UTC)

I agree with reverting this entry. Science Journal is quite a reliable publisher and the process included peer review. Are there mistakes in the science? Likely, but we'll have to wait for other teams to attempt duplication. Cheers, BatteryIncluded (talk) 01:19, 25 March 2011 (UTC)
It is true that the journal article has not yet been published in print. And although I agree with 128.210.44.60 that there are problems with quality of the data presented in it, the conclusion that Science "rapidly lost faith in the validity of the data" is pure speculation (though a plausible one). However, it is also quite plausible that the paper is being held so that it can be published alongside a peer-reviewed critique of the poor science presented in the paper. In any case, Wikipedia should not comment on the reasons for the unusual delay in print publication until reliable sources comment on it. 71.185.49.174 (talk) 01:36, 25 March 2011 (UTC)

Extremophiles[edit]

Please do not delete the extremophiles category from the GFAJ-1 article. Thriving in a salty and arsenic-rich environment, makes it an extremophile as well as halophile. Thank you. BatteryIncluded (talk) 15:21, 27 March 2011 (UTC)

Hi, I have not deleted the category extremophiles, but simply subdivided it. Extremophiles simply was too extended a category and creating sub-categories that are more precise in describing why an organism is an extremophile, can only lead to a clearer picture. cheers Androstachys (talk) 15:34, 27 March 2011 (UTC)
OK. Thank you.BatteryIncluded (talk) 16:30, 27 March 2011 (UTC)

Strain=proof?[edit]

The latest edit suggested that having the strain would give a proof. I am confused if that is proof that Halomonas sp. GFAJ-1 is an arsenotolerant halophile or that Felisa Wolf-Simon is an alien? (In case you have not read it on Rosie Redfield's blog check it out undergraduate essay) :) --Squidonius (talk) 23:55, 27 May 2011 (UTC)

Proof that GFAJ-1 is an alien. And FWS an arsenotolerant halophile. Also, agree with you strain edits. Rainbowwrasse (talk) 11:15, 28 May 2011 (UTC)

New Criticism[edit]

Debate over arsenic-based life enters a new chapter - http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/debate-over-arsenic-based-life-enters-a-new-chapter/2011/05/26/AGhk7fCH_story.html NASA arsenic life study faces critics - http://content.usatoday.com/communities/sciencefair/post/2011/05/arsenic-life-felisa-science-critics-nasa/1 -Abhishikt 00:53, 28 May 2011 (UTC)

can we just write in the text "just see Rosie Redfield's blog for the current status"[edit]

Nearly once a week, Rosie Redfield's blog has more preliminary data that just denies the GFAJ-1 paper. In order to not re-write the last bit with every update and to actually keep it up to date, can we bend the wikipedia guideline on External links (WP:ELPOINTS) and simply say,"For an updated coverage of Rosie Redfield's research on GFAJ-1 see her blog."? --Squidonius (talk) 06:49, 8 August 2011 (UTC)

NASA Culture[edit]

Me thinks NASA has too many PR/marketing/infowar people engaged in propagandizing and self-promotion for a healthy 21st century government agency. Its culture dates back to the Cold War, after all. To the original researcher's credit, she did not promote this issue as dogma. She was just engaged in tentative research like any other good scientist. -Reticuli 71.65.115.103 (talk) 18:18, 17 April 2012 (UTC)

That's harsh. I remind you that the original NASA press conference included Steven A. Benner, a biochemist who said right then he didn't believe it. El Ingles (talk) 21:56, 17 April 2012 (UTC)

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units of concentration[edit]

"It also has one of the highest natural concentrations of arsenic in the world (200 μM)." The preceding sentence from the Discovery paragraph has units of an amount (200 micro moles) not units of concentration, presumably 200 micro moles per liter.2605:A601:4ED:8200:5D3E:E31F:2D07:F8CC (talk) 11:59, 12 September 2017 (UTC)

M is for molar = 1 mole / liter. Dragons flight (talk) 12:27, 12 September 2017 (UTC)

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