It is well known that oxygen rise greatly facilitated biological evolution. However, the underlying mechanisms remain elusive. Recently, Raymond and Segrè revealed that molecular oxygen allows 1000 more metabolic reactions than can occur in anoxic conditions. From the novel metabolites produced in aerobic metabolism, we serendipitously found that some of the metabolites are signaling molecules that target nuclear receptors. Since nuclear signaling systems are indispensable to superior organisms, we speculated that aerobic metabolism may facilitate biological evolution through promoting the establishment of nuclear signaling systems. This hypothesis is validated by the observation that most (97.5%) nuclear receptor ligands are produced by aerobic metabolism, which is further explained in terms of the chemical criteria (appropriate volume and rather high hydrophobicity) of nuclear receptor ligands that aerobic metabolites are more ready than anaerobic counterparts to satisfy these criteria.