Science: Living Crystals?

Between the crystal (highest form of inorganic matter) and a unicellular bit of protoplasm (lowest form of living matter) has been a gap which scientists have never been able to span. In a recent issue of Nature, British scientific weekly, Dr. F. Rinne, University of Freiburg, Germany, suggested similarities between a crystal and a simple sperm cell which may be the means of drawing living and nonliving matter together. He pointed out that a chief characteristic of liquid crystals* is the so-called "straight-stretch" type of molecule which composes it. Protein molecules of...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!