# Can mass develop without the Higgs mechanism?

In Vienna, about one year ago, researchers proposed that a previously-discovered meson is the glueball, a massive particle that consists of massless gluons (this is their published paper in Phys. Rev. Lett). Can't the same mechanism be responsible for the mass of quarks, leptons and other massive particles? If so, they have to be composites of massless particles, of course, so maybe this discovery is at the same time a hint that that's indeed the case (as in the Rishon theory of Harari).

In the case of glueballs the large majority of the mass is not caused by the Higgs mechanism but from the potential energy that binds the gluons together (remember $E = mc^2$). A similar mechanism gives hadrons and mesons (bound states of quarks and gluons) the majority of their mass. See for example this threat.