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Thu Dec 20, 2012, 01:03 PM

Origin of life emerged from cell membrane bioenergetics

A coherent pathway which starts from no more than rocks, water and carbon dioxide and leads to the emergence of the strange bio-energetic properties of living cells, has been traced for the first time in a major hypothesis paper in Cell this week.

At the origin of life the first protocells must have needed a vast amount of energy to drive their metabolism and replication, as enzymes that catalyse very specific reactions were yet to evolve. Most energy flux must have simply dissipated without use.

So where did it all that energy come from on the early Earth, and how did it get focused into driving the organic chemistry required for life?


http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2012-12/ucl-ool121912.php



This should be the biggest news item of the day.

13 replies, 1028 views

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Arrow 13 replies Author Time Post
Reply Origin of life emerged from cell membrane bioenergetics (Original post)
DavidDvorkin Dec 2012 OP
The Magistrate Dec 2012 #1
postulater Dec 2012 #2
Eddie Haskell Dec 2012 #3
AldoLeopold Dec 2012 #5
RomneyLies Dec 2012 #6
DavidDvorkin Dec 2012 #9
Eddie Haskell Dec 2012 #10
RomneyLies Dec 2012 #12
Eddie Haskell Dec 2012 #13
exboyfil Dec 2012 #4
phantom power Dec 2012 #7
Warren DeMontague Dec 2012 #8
JaneyVee Dec 2012 #11

Response to DavidDvorkin (Original post)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 01:10 PM

1. Interesting, Sir

Thank you for calling it to our attention here.

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Response to DavidDvorkin (Original post)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 01:14 PM

2. That's why it's crucial to keep your membranes intact.

Cell membrane failure lets the outside stuff in and the inside stuff out. Hard to stay alive that way.

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Response to DavidDvorkin (Original post)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 01:15 PM

3. A rare chemistry indeed

In 4.5 billion years, life has only been created one time.

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Response to Eddie Haskell (Reply #3)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 01:20 PM

5. Here at least

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Response to Eddie Haskell (Reply #3)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 01:21 PM

6. Not necessarily

 

It could have happened in multiple vents in multiple undersea locations. It doesn't necessarily follow that a single event in a single hydrothermic vent produced all life that exists today or has every existed.

In fact, the abundance and diversity of life before the Permian-Triassic extinction event would suggest that life may well have begun in multiple events.

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Response to RomneyLies (Reply #6)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 02:05 PM

9. Good point.

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Response to RomneyLies (Reply #6)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 07:08 PM

10. So far we've not found one ...

but you can believe what you want to believe.

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Response to Eddie Haskell (Reply #10)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 08:49 PM

12. We have no clue where life began

 

For you to suggest it could only have begun in a single hydrothermic vent under the ocean rather than possibly in multiple vents in multiple locations under the ocean is ludicrous when identical conditions existed in multiple vents in multiple locations.

ESPECIALLY when you look at the diversity of lifeforms in the Permian period. My gosh, man, 97% of marine species went extinct in the Permian-Triassic extinction event!

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Response to RomneyLies (Reply #12)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 11:15 PM

13. It's possible

No surprising events can be completely excluded; nonetheless, it is highly probable that the representatives of only a single line have been preserved to the present day, either by accident or as a result of mutual competition. Available information, especially related to the uniformity of the basic molecular apparatus of organisms and the similarity of basic biochemical processes, such as replication of nucleic acid or proteosynthesis, unambiguously indicate that all the known species of organisms have a common ancestor.

http://www.frozenevolution.com/xxiii1-all-known-species-organisms-living-earth-evolved-common-ancestor-course-phylogenesis

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Response to DavidDvorkin (Original post)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 01:18 PM

4. A testable hypothesis

Only one credible method needs to be shown and not the acutal method itself which could be hidden by time to support biogenesis as the only realistic alternative.

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Response to DavidDvorkin (Original post)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 01:25 PM

7. I favor Stuart Kauffman's proposal that the catalytic cycles evolved first

The probability of reinforcing autocatalytic cycles approaches 100% pretty quickly past a certain threshold of unique compounds.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autocatalytic_set

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Response to DavidDvorkin (Original post)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 01:32 PM

8. Cool. Or, more accurately, hot.



I wonder if this makes the development of life in subsurface oceans with tidal/gravitational-induced heating (ie Europa, etc) a more likely proposition?

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Response to DavidDvorkin (Original post)

Thu Dec 20, 2012, 07:11 PM

11. mind, blown.

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