This honor goes to Dr. Ronald Breslow of Columbia University, who ended his recent paper "Evidence for the Likely Origin of Homochirality in Amino Acids, Sugars, and Nucleosides on Prebiotic Earth" in the Journal of the American Chemical Society with an ominous editorial. After an otherwise technical paper about the prehistoric origins of amino acids, the conclusion takes a turn for the extremely sinister. Emphasis is ours:

An ‚Ä©implication ‚Ä©from‚Ä© this ‚Ä©work ‚Ä©is ‚Ä©that ‚Ä©elsewhere ‚Ä©in ‚Ä©the ‚Ä©universe ‚Ä©there ‚Ä©could ‚Ä©be ‚Ä©life ‚Ä©forms ‚Ä©based‚Ä© on ‚Ä©D ‚Ä©amino ‚Ä©acids ‚Ä©and ‚Ä©L ‚Ä©sugars, ‚Ä©depending ‚Ä©on ‚Ä©the ‚Ä©chirality ‚Ä©of ‚Ä©circular ‚Ä©polarized‚Ä© light ‚Ä©in‚Ä© that ‚Ä©sector ‚Ä©of ‚Ä©the universe or ‚Ä©whatever ‚Ä©other ‚Ä©process ‚Ä©operated ‚Ä©to ‚Ä©favor ‚Ä©the ‚Ä©L‚Ä©őĪ‚Äźmethyl ‚Ä©amino acids ‚Ä©in ‚Ä©the ‚Ä©meteorites ‚Ä©that ‚Ä©have landed‚Ä© on Earth. ‚Ä©‚Ä©Such ‚Ä©life ‚Ä©forms ‚Ä©could ‚Ä©well ‚Ä©be ‚Ä©advanced ‚Ä©versions ‚Ä©of ‚Ä©dinosaurs, ‚Ä©if ‚Ä©mammals ‚Ä©did ‚Ä©not ‚Ä©have the good‚Ä© fortune ‚Ä©to ‚Ä©have ‚Ä©the ‚Ä©dinosaurs ‚Ä©wiped ‚Ä©out ‚Ä©by ‚Ä©an ‚Ä©asteroidal ‚Ä©collision,‚Ä© as ‚Ä©on ‚Ä©Earth. ‚Ä©‚Ä©We ‚Ä©would ‚Ä©be ‚Ä©better ‚Ä©off not ‚Ä©meeting ‚Ä©them.

To make matters all the more hilarious, the press release for this paper has somehow spun this extraterrestrial snippet into the central focus:

Could "Advanced" Dinosaurs Rule Other Planets?
New scientific research raises the possibility that advanced versions of T. rex and other dinosaurs ‚ÄĒ monstrous creatures with the intelligence and cunning of humans ‚ÄĒ may be the life forms that evolved on other planets in the universe.

Given the nature of online academic publishing, there is the possibility this sentence could be excised in the final draft. For the sake of future human-xenosaurian diplomacy, this may not be a terrible idea. Our Star Tyrannosaurus allies could have extremely sensitive feelings.


[Via The Awl]