A GROUNDBREAKING discovery could prove Mars was teeming with “aliens” and could help “trace life elsewhere in the universe”, science boffins claim.
Alien hunters have been waiting for the announcement for centuries – and it looks like scientists may finally have proof extraterrestrial life once existed on the Red Planet.
British experts say the extraordinary find of the world’s oldest fossils, dating back to at least 3,770 million years ago, at a time when both Mars and Earth had liquid water.
The astonishing find unearthed in Canada will help mankind “trace life elsewhere in the universe”, the scientists claim.
Study first author Matthew Dodd, a PhD student at University College London, said: “These discoveries demonstrate life developed on Earth at a time when Mars and Earth had liquid water at their surfaces, posing exciting questions for extra-terrestrial life.
“Therefore, we expect to find evidence for past life on Mars 4,000 million years ago, or if not, Earth may have been a special exception.”
The evidence is understood to be at least 310 million years older than any other fossil discovered before.
Scientists believe life emerged from “hot, seafloor vents” shortly after our planet formed.
Bacteria which formed tiny filaments and tubes lived on iron found encased in quartz layers in the Nuvvuagittuq Supracrustal Belt (NSB) in Quebec, Canada.
The fossils were found in the iron-rich deep-sea hydrothermal vent system which experts believe could have been home to Earth’s earliest life forms between 3,770 and 4,300 million years ago.
Study lead author Doctor Dominic Papineau, of UCL Earth Sciences, added: “The fact we unearthed them from one of the oldest known rock formations, suggests we’ve found direct evidence of one of Earth’s oldest life forms.
“This discovery helps us piece together the history of our planet and the remarkable life on it, and will help to identify traces of life elsewhere in the universe.”