A "bright knot" indicates the densest clustering of material in that portion of the ring - just the right kind of scenario to spark the formation of protoplanets, based on current models.
"When a sufficient amount of material is accumulated, planets or comets can be formed here," Fukagawa added.
ANALYSIS: Is This a Baby Picture of a Giant Planet?
This is also the first firm evidence of planetary formation observed so far from the central star in a protoplanetary disk.
Based on measurements of the dense knot's submillimeter emission strength and temperature, Fukagawa's team concludes that either rocky planets or giant Jupiter-sized worlds are actively forming around HD 142527.
While gaps in the protoplanetary disk around this star have previously been observed, indicating the likelihood of planetary formation, this is the first time direct observations have been made within the internal part of the dust ring itself.
Watch an animation of the HD 142527 system below: