TIL That Scientists discovered a species of fungus at Chernobyl that uses the gamma radiation from the nuclear waste as a food source

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This isn’t the beginning of a horror movie or anything. Nope. Not at all.


Protomolecule confirmed


I for one, would like to welcome our new fungus overlords.


Life finds a way


The article describes the process as analogous to the capture of visible light photons in photosynthesis. I have my doubts. The energy of gamma ray photons is 1000 times that of a visible light photon. Photosynthesis is catching a fastball in a catcher’s mitt. A gamma ray photon would be like a cannonball. Probably the gamma rays are generating a lot of free radicals in the system and the fungus is evolving to use those high energy species as fuel.