Soviet Abiogenesis

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Soviet Abiogenesis is the theory that scientists in the USSR developed means to create synthetic life or otherwise to induce life in inanimate objects such as fossilized creatures. The most notable supposed occurrence is the Chudinov affair.

The Chudinov Affair[edit]

In 1972 Dr. Chudinov was based in a lab at the Berezniki Potassium Combine in the Ural Mountains, puzzled by the red discoloration of salt deposits at the base of the Ural foothills. The deposits were made up of alternating strata of potassium, magnesium chloride, and sodium, so he experimented by dissolving away the sodium in distilled water. Upon doing so Chudinov and his fellow researchers identified the source of the discoloration as the clear fossil structure of algal colonies and worms. These were dated at being around 250 million years old.

Returning to the samples later, Chudinov was amazed to find the microorganisms taking on the semblance of life under the microscope. After being placed in various culture mediums the worms and algae became more mobile, grew and reproduced, apparently unharmed by 250 million years entombed in potassium crystals.

The results of the experiments were published in Soviet Union magazine, in February 1972. Later that year newspapers and scientific journals outside of the USSR paid attention to what became known as the 'Chudinov affair.' The reports were treated seriously and the full paper by Chudinov was eagerly awaited in the West, only to never emerge. After the initial news there were no further updates on the Chudinov affair and interest soon faded.

In recent years scientists have successfully revived ancient organisms from similar mineral deposits in Russia, proving the viability of Chudinov's seemingly fantastic claims. Similar to the Oil Pit Squid and Crosse's arachnae, these creatures have sometimes been treated as examples of complex synthetic abiogenesis. In some accounts the Chudinov Organisms are described as 'trilobites' however all of the 1972 sources relay the less sensational algae and nematodes.

Popular Culture[edit]

A highly speculative version of the Soviet resurrection/abiogenesis techniques was adapted into the music video for Metallica's single 'All Nightmare Long.'