Attempt to replicate "arsenic life" experiment fails

Rosie Redfield, a microbiologist and one of the first people to criticize the "arsenic life" paper last year, recently announced that she and several colleagues had attempted to replicate the original experiment, without success. The original paper claimed that bacteria found in California's Mono Lake could substitute arsenic for the phosphorous normally found in its DNA. Redfield's team found no evidence that that was happening. However, it's worth noting that Redfield's research hasn't yet been peer-reviewed, and there are still some key questions about methodology—both in the original experiments and in Redfield's follow up—that make it hard to call this an absolute refutation. (Via The Scientist)