Like DNA, the dust spirals can store information. They do so in the scaffolding of their bodies, as they have two stable states one with a large diameter and the other with a small one so a spiral could carry a series of wide and narrow sections.According to Gregor Morfill of the Max Planck Institute, the places most likely to harbor such life—if it can indeed exist—are the rings of Saturn and Uranus. There, the dust would be fine grains of ice, and the plasma would be supplied by solar winds.
The specific order of these sections can be copied from one dust spiral to another, like a genetic code. The researchers aren't sure how it happens, but they think each narrow section of spiral creates a permanent vortex of moving dust outside it. So if another spiral drifts alongside it, that vortex pinches the same length into its narrow state.
The spirals even feed, in a sense, as they need fresh plasma to survive and grow, suggesting they may compete with one another for food. Since they are also capable of passing on their genetic code, then perhaps they could evolve into more complex structures.