But "on an emotional level, I found the results thrilling. If the rock ultimately proves to contain fossilized Martian bacteria, it would suggest that life arose on an isolated system (a planet) more than once. This would be very strong support for current theories that regard the emergence of life as inevitable, given certain broad conditions. The importance for our understanding of biology and evolution would be enormous."
Confirmation would be "a beautiful example" of how the methods of one science - in this case, the history and provenance of rocks - can be applied to an important general problem like the origin of life. To study the Martian meteorite, geoscientists also needed new ultra-sensitive techniques like precision mass spectrometry. Their work, and that of many scientists, depends on the continuing development of such new investigative tools, including "the powerful accelerator-based techniques of Middleton and Klein."