Bacteria have been discovered that turn ordinary metal into gold. This sounds great, except that if there is too much gold, it will become worthless?it’s valuable because of its rarity. For instance, Diamonds are actually much more common that we think, but they are kept artificially scarce?and thus expensive?by limited mining by a single South African company.
Robin Lloyd writes in LiveScience.com that Australian researcher Frank Reith has discovered a film of bacteria on gold that has been mined in that country. When he grew the bacteria in his lab and dissolved it in a liquid solution containing non-gold metals, the result was gold nuggets. This might be the secret behind seemingly magic legends about ancient alchemists being able to turn ordinary metal into gold.
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