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Life may be left-handed, but it shows flashes of ambidexterity. That could complicate the search for life on other worlds, but it may also help clear up some puzzling findings from NASA's Viking Mars landers.

Many amino acids, sugars and other molecules that are important for life are chiral - they come in two forms that are mirror images of one another. Life tends to prefer one form over the other, using only right-handed glucose molecules, for example. However, bacteria appear to be less selective.

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Category: Science