*But DNA may be the only solution to the chemistry problem of self-replicating molecules that create life as we know it. Having only one planet in our solar system that has the only type of life form we can recognize, has its drawbacks.
Before the alien creature is shown respirating in our atmosphere (aboard the Nostromo) and requiring plenty of water, we see it has done damage to another xenomorph.
The "Pilot" has a head and neck, so it's a vertebrate creature. From its four limbs of two arms, a pelvic center, and two legs, to its bipedal upright chest structure and multiple ribs joined at the center of the cage, to its two enclosed orbital eye sockets and lower mandible, the dead alien pilot was a remarkably familar humanoid being.
Moreover, Ash speaks of the facehugger's complex cell structure, so the alien is a Eukaryote. To our current knowledge, only 22 amino acids can exist in a Eukaryote creature. Since the aliens were capable of feeding off of the dead pilot as well as us, the suggestion in this movie is that, while life may be prevalent in the universe, DNA is a common solution for multicellular, complex, oxygen breathing humanoid life forms.
That's not unusual because our type of sun is not unusual. The accretion disk material that creates the sun generaly creates the planets in its orbit. So given enough solar systems (as many as 100 billion in our galaxy alone. 19 nearby Sol type suns with solar systems - and counting - just within our tiny neighborhood of the galactic arm); With enough planets; Within the right distance; Orbiting a star like ours; Will have reducing gases like nitrogen, methane, ammonia, and also carbon dioxide. A chemical mix courtesy of the Sol type star.
Does a Sol type sun (G-type main-sequence star - G2V) have to produce carbon-based amino acid life forms?
We aren't sure. Maybe.
In 1953 at the University of Chicaco, Stanley L. Miller and Harold C. Urey, using heat and electricity to represent volcanic activity and storms, and the primordial gases of methane, ammonia, hydrogen, and water, showed what would happen to such gases on a young planet.
Yet their experiment is not the only solution to creating amino acids.
Leslie E. Orgel at CalTech took what could be considered the opposite approach and tried freezing various primordial compounds and elements, to imitate earth during an ice age. When he froze hydrogen cyanide and ammonia in H2O, he made adenine, one of the four bases of our DNA (Adenine, Thymine, Guanine, Cytosine - ATGC). The spiral strands of DNA could have been formed by either tropical environment, freezing environments, or a combination of the two (imagine amino acid-laced primordial ice bergs drifting into tropical climes.). The point is, in an earth-type environment, DNA may be the only possible choice.
If that's the case, and there is no evidence to prove or disprove it, the alien is a natural being.
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