World's oldest colours discovered

The colour. Image ANU

Researchers extracted the pigment from rocks deep beneath Africa's Sahara Desert.

Biogeochemistry Lab Manager Janet Hope from the ANU Research School of Earth Sciences holds a vial of colored porphyrins (pink colored liquid), believed to be some of the oldest pigments in the world.

Dr. Nur Gueneli at the Australian National University stated that the pigments that were obtained from the oceanic black shales at the Taoudeni Basin at Mauritania in West Africa, proved to be around ½ billion years older in comparison to the pigments that were discovered earlier.

"Bright pink pigment is a molecular fossil of chlorophyll, which produced the ancient fotosinteza the organisms inhabiting the ocean which has long disappeared", she said in a statement.

They happen to be more than half a billion years older than previous pigment discoveries.

"It turned out to be 1.1bn years old, which is absolutely incredible", said the senior lead researcher, Associate Prof Jochen Brocks from the Australian National University. "Imagine you could find a fossilized dinosaur skin that still has its original color, green or blue. that is exactly the type of discovery that we've made". These particular fossils go back 1.1 billion years where there's a gap in knowledge between how microorganisms became larger animals.


Researchers analysed the pink molecule and found it was produced by tiny cyanobacteria.

The color of bubble gum, flamingos and cotton candy - bright pink - is the world's oldest color, according to a recent study.

The entire work from the ANU team can be found in a recent version of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS). These cyanobacteria had a great run for 500 million years or so, which is more than enough time to pull off wearing pink. These animals then supported the evolution of carnivores that preyed on these herbivores, and life on Earth exploded with complexity. In comparison, the microscopic algae are a thousand times larger in volume than the cyanobacteria.

"And you need these larger particles as a source of food for larger creatures".

It was a few hundred million years until algae would begin to multiply, ultimately forming the base of a food web that would eventually fuel the evolution of larger animals, Brocks told Live Science.

Related News:

  • Timeline: Thai cave rescue

    Timeline: Thai cave rescue

    Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said that the successful rescue at Tham Luang will set an example for other rescue operations in the future.
    You need to see this incredible footage from NYUAD

    You need to see this incredible footage from NYUAD

    However, this ice sheet is becoming small due to increased melting and warming temperatures in the region mean more loss of ice. The results after the iceberg breaking away from a glacier would stretch from lower Manhattan up to Midtown in New York City.
    Lovren hails Croatia's historic World Cup achievement

    Lovren hails Croatia's historic World Cup achievement

    They were briefly silenced when Croatia equalised through Ivan Perisic in the middle of the second half. Croatia on Sunday, but don't forget that there is also a game on Saturday. "It was a tough first half.
  • Ex-FBI lawyer Page agrees to testify before House this week

    Ex-FBI lawyer Page agrees to testify before House this week

    Chairman, there's no basis for that", protested the top Judiciary Democrat, Rep. "This demand puts Mr. FBI Deputy Assistant Director Peter Strzok is seated before a hearing on Capitol Hill Thursday.
    Magic Leap mixed reality headset could finally go on sale within weeks

    Magic Leap mixed reality headset could finally go on sale within weeks

    The company has been showing off its "Creator Edition" product, a set of goggles and a portable, wearable computer to power them. The deal will likely have Magic Leap One relying on AT&T's 5G network, though the device is also expected to work over Wi-Fi.
    Kylian Mbappe revels in England's World Cup misery on Instagram

    Kylian Mbappe revels in England's World Cup misery on Instagram

    Croatia, in their first semi since 1998, levelled through Ivan Perisic after 68 minutes and then looked the more unsafe side. They now have the chance to avenge that loss and become the ninth nation to win a World Cup final.
  • Apple will discontinue iPhone SE and iPhone X, report says

    Apple will discontinue iPhone SE and iPhone X, report says

    It will bring the highly-anticipated features from the expensive iPhone X at a price that will be more accessible to the masses. However, it would not have the same dual camera as the iPhone X, or even the slightly lesser quality iPhone 8 dual camera.
    Gareth Southgate gave England staff handwritten notes before World Cup

    Gareth Southgate gave England staff handwritten notes before World Cup

    There are a lot of things that have been hugely positive for us. "We've proved to ourselves and our country that is possible".
    Manchester United players report for pre-season training

    Manchester United players report for pre-season training

    Lindelof embodied most of their good qualities such as their efficiency on the ball, their work-rate and their solid defending. Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho has ordered double training sessions for his players in preseason.
  • Schumer's war on Kavanaugh confirmation courts disaster for Dems

    Schumer's war on Kavanaugh confirmation courts disaster for Dems

    There has been no one with experience in elected office since O'Connor, who had been a state senator and judge in Arizona. She said Kozinski fondled her in a auto after an event in the mid-1980s and invited her to go to a motel and have sex.
    Trump's United Kingdom  visit has high potential for embarrassment

    Trump's United Kingdom visit has high potential for embarrassment

    London Mayor Sadiq Khan has come under fire for his approval of a blimp featuring US President Donald Trump dressed as a baby. Trump's itinerary will keep him out of central London on Friday, when large protests are planned.

    Trump touches down in United Kingdom on first official visit as president

    Mr and Mrs Trump will head to Scotland for the weekend, where they aren't expected to be involved in any official commitments. They are scheduled to spend Thursday night at the US Ambassador's home Winfield House, which is in Regent's Park.


Most liked

Widow of diver who died during Thai cave boys mission pays tribute
He was inside the cave complex and was part of the dive team setting up oxygen tanks along the rescue route, NZ Herald reported. His widow, Waleeporn Gunan told the BBC how much she adored her "lovely" husband and that he was "the hero of my heart".

Pyongyang refuses to show up at war remains talks
The US military has since announced that 100 wooden coffins have been moved to the inter-Korean border in preparation. As the war was fought on Korean soil, however, only North Korea has remains to return.

Prince Harry Thinks This Many Kids Would Be Too Many Kids!
It is a replica of a 19th century one used for most of Queen Victoria's children which is now too delicate to wear. But although the ceremony might have been a snooze for a tiny prince , the fashion from the day wasn't.

Netflix Topples HBO in Emmy Nominations
This year's Emmy Awards will broadcast live on NBC from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles on Monday, Sept. 17 at 8 p.m. Leading the nominations in totals by platform were Netflix (112), leapfrogging last year's leader HBO , which scored 108.

A primer to save on Amazon Prime Day
That means some of the very best deals can be gone long before people who aren't Prime members get to know about them. Lightning will strike throughout Prime Day, in the form of lightning-fast sales, which will come and go in a flash.

Trump visits United Kingdom amid acrimonious relationship with London
Demonstrators will assemble outside the BBC building in Portland Place at 2pm on Friday and march to Trafalgar Square for a rally. The issue is 'Do they have freedom to protest, freedom to assemble and should they be allowed to do so?

German court: Catalan politician can legally be extradited
A second charge of rebellion did not warrant an extradition from Germany to Spain, the court ruled. He was arrested on his way back from a trip to Finland.

Man could lose limbs to flesh-eating bacteria after crabbing in N.J
But the New Jersey Health Department says if anyone has open cuts or scrapes, it's best to stay out of the brackish water. The vast majority of 80,000 or so Vibrio cases in the US each year come from ingesting undercooked seafood.

Serena drops first set but zooms into semis
But beneath the surface, the 36-year-old insisted she is feeling unusually calm as she enters the business end of the tournament. But she failed in her bid to become the first Dutchwoman to make the Wimbledon last four since Betty Stove in 1977.

Trump says North Atlantic Treaty Organisation members agreed to meet spending commitments
The Alabama Republican led the delegation, which met with senior Russian officials , including Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov. Although administration officials point to the long-standing alliance between the United States and the United Kingdom, Mr.

IOS bug crashes messaging apps on iPhones after typing ‘Taiwan’
And given the relationship China has with Taiwan, the company might be appeasing the Chinese government with its flag blockade. China considers Taiwan as a renegade provice, and does not recognise the sovereignty of the island nation.

12 rescued boys make victory sign from Thai hospital beds
Their use meant that even if a boy panicked during the rescue and got water inside his mask, the pressure would expel it. The trapped group in Thailand have now all been rescued from the cave, and are now recuperating in hospital.

‘Inbox’ by Gmail app now updated for iPhone X
Well, collectively, Americans are the biggest iOS spenders, throwing $36 billion at Apple's virtual app store during its lifetime. The auto has been a stumbling point for Apple , but there are a lot of app store opportunities in that industry as well.

Theresa May aims to boost US-UK relations during Donald Trump visit
After the visit , Trump will decamp to Finland for a one-on-one with Russian President Vladimir Putin on July 16. He said: 'I am going to a pretty hot spot right now with a lot of resignations '.

World Cup ace Kylian Mbappe 'couldn't care less' about the Ballon d'Or
But it is thought that Mbappe or England captain Harry Kane could yet rival Ronaldo by excelling in Sunday's World Cup final. We could easily have come to this stage and frozen. "It will be a World Cup final, a great match, difficult".