An analysis of the origin of life

Received Jun 25; Accepted Jul 9. However, analysis of some other texts written by Darwin, and of the correspondence he exchanged with friends and colleagues demonstrates that he took for granted the possibility of a natural emergence of the first life forms. Like many of his contemporaries, Darwin rejected the idea that putrefaction of preexisting organic compounds could lead to the appearance of organisms.

An analysis of the origin of life

An analysis of the origin of life

Thus James Watson reported that, immediately after they had uncovered the structure of DNA, Francis Crick "winged into the Eagle pub to tell everyone within hearing that we had discovered the secret of life. Its proportions permitted information storage in a language in which four chemicals, called bases, played the same role as twenty six letters do in the English language.

Further, the information was stored in two long chains, each of which specified the contents of its partner. This arrangement suggested a mechanism for reproduction, that was subsequently illustrated in many biochemistry texts, as well as on a tie that my wife bought for me at a crafts fair: The two strands of the DNA double helix parted company.

As they did so, new DNA building blocks, called nucleotides, lined up along the separated strands and linked up.


Two double helices now existed in place of one, each a replica of the original. The Watson-Crick structure triggered an avalanche of discoveries about the way in which living cells function today.

The two authors accomplished a great task of bringing together several pieces of scattered information throughout the domains of specialized science that evolved independently, so to say, and which within their respective domains can somehow contribute to the study of the origin of life. Charles Darwin’s ‘Origin of Species’ is unquestionably one of the most culturally transformative achievements in human intellectual history. I was recommended to read this material, which examines life and its origins from an engineering point-of-view and the author was proposing a "Rational Design Hypothesis" - a "5th Option" that explains the origin of life.

Muller wrote that the gene material was "living material, the present-day representative of the first life," which Carl Sagan visualized as "a primitive free-living naked gene situated in a dilute solution of organic matter.

Organic chemistry, a subject sometimes feared by pre-medical students, is the chemistry of carbon compounds, both those present in life and those playing no part in life. Many different definitions of life have been proposed.

Life is a self-sustained chemical system capable of undergoing Darwinian evolution. Richard Dawkins elaborated on this image of the earliest living entity in his book The Selfish Gene: We will call it the Replicator.

It may not have been the biggest or the most complex molecule around, but it had the extraordinary property of being able to create copies of itself. As we shall see, several other replicators have now been suggested.

DNA replication cannot proceed without the assistance of a number of proteins--members of a family of large molecules that are chemically very different from DNA. Proteins, like DNA, are constructed by linking subunits, amino acids in this case, together to form a long chain.

Cells employ twenty of these building blocks in the proteins that they make, affording a variety of products capable of performing many different tasks--proteins are the handymen of the living cell.

Their most famous subclass, the enzymes, act as expeditors, speeding up chemical processes that would otherwise take place too slowly to be of use to life.

The above account brings to mind the old riddle: Which came first, the chicken or the egg? DNA holds the recipe for protein construction. Yet that information cannot be retrieved or copied without the assistance of proteins.

Which large molecule, then, appeared first in getting life started--proteins the chicken or DNA the egg? A possible solution appeared when attention shifted to a new champion--RNA.

Possible Sites for the Origin of Life

This versatile class of molecule is, like DNA, assembled of nucleotide building blocks, but plays many roles in our cells. In carrying out its various duties, RNA can take on the form of a double helix that resembles DNA, or of a folded single strand, much like a protein.

In the Nobel prizes in both chemistry and medicine were awarded for discoveries concerning the role of RNA in editing and censoring DNA instructions.

A simple solution to the chicken-and-egg riddle now appeared to fall into place: Life began with the appearance of the first RNA molecule.Life (ISSN ; CODEN: LBSIB7) is an international peer-reviewed open access journal of scientific studies related to fundamental themes in Life Sciences, especially those concerned with the origins of life and evolution of biosystems, and is published quarterly online by MDPI.

The Astrobiology Society of Britain (ASB) is affiliated with Life and their members receive a discount on the.

Jul 25,  · Analysis of Darwin’s views on the origin of life and those of his contemporaries must take into account that during the 19th century the usage of the term “spontaneous generation” was open to different interpretations.

Xcode Life was founded with the vision of empowering individuals globally with knowledge about their genes. We use state of the art tools in Genetics and Bioinformatics to produce thoroughly curated, easy to understand genetic reports that can be used by professional practitioners as well as individuals.

Essay about The Origin of Life Words 4 Pages The Origin of Life When considering the many theories involving “How life began” You must not consider a few main theories but a few main theory groups.

Creationists often claim that Louis Pasteur disproved spontaneous generation and hence any naturalistic origin of life. This article shows what Pasteur really demonstrated and gives a history of the subject from early ideas of spontaneous generation to modern ideas about the origin of life.

Leaving the moribund Eddie, Frank crosses paths with a black deliveryman, and they talk about hurricane survivors.

A Simpler Origin for Life - Scientific American