UK Daily Mail 
April 13, 2012
In July 1976, the Viking 1 probe touched down on Mars and failed to find traces of life – but now, three decades later, scientists think the experiment was flawed.
VIking 1 did find evidence of extraterrestrial microbes in soil samples from the Red Planet.
Mathematical analysis of the samples concluded that salts in the soil on Mars ‘threw off’ initial estimates – and that the soil samples show strong evidence of microbial life.
The new analysis looked for ‘complexity’ in the samples – an indication of life. To the surprise of the scientists, they found it.
‘This suggests a robust biological response,’ say the researchers, from the University of Siena and California’s Keck Institute.
‘These analyses support the interpretation that the Viking LR experiment did detect extant microbial life on Mars.’