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Latest Abiogenesis Stories

2010-04-27 13:16:34

NASA will hold a news media teleconference at 1:30 p.m. EDT, Wednesday, April 28, to discuss the status of agency-sponsored astrobiology research, including the search for evidence of extraterrestrial life and the study of how life began on Earth. Topics also will include the quest for evidence of life on Mars, the habitability of other celestial bodies, and future technology research. This week, NASA and scientists from around the world are gathering at a biennial meeting near Houston to...

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2010-04-26 09:21:03

Montana State University chemists have determined the structure of an intermediate form of a unique enzyme that participates in some of the most fundamental reactions in biology. The discovery could lead to understanding life in ancient ecosystems. It could also play a role in producing alternate fuels and fighting pollution, according to MSU researchers who published their findings April 25 in the advance online publication of the journal Nature. Lead author David Mulder, a doctoral student...

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2010-04-21 08:53:01

Scientists are reporting discovery of what may be the "ancestral Eve" crystal that billions of years ago gave life on Earth its curious and exclusive preference for so-called left-handed amino acids. Those building blocks of proteins come in two forms "” left- and right-handed "” that mirror each other like a pair of hands. Their study, which may help resolve one of the most perplexing mysteries about the origin of life, is in ACS' Crystal Growth & Design, a bi-monthly...

2010-03-18 13:48:00

NEW YORK, March 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Within the general question of the chemical origin of life lies the question of handedness, or chirality (a term derived from the Greek word for hand). Critically important molecules that make up life -- including DNA, RNA, polysaccharides and proteins -- are chiral. This means there are mirror image forms that are not identical, much as one's left and right hands are different and are mirror reflections. (Logo:...

2010-03-17 13:58:00

JUPITER, Fla., March 17 /PRNewswire/ -- Recent laboratory experiments which seek to recreate the formation of the first living cells from the basic chemical building blocks of nature are shedding new light on how life may have occurred on earth and on other planets, biologist Jack Szostak and chemist Brian Paegel said late yesterday in the annual Lasker Foundation Lecture on the Florida campus of the Scripps Research Institute. In his remarks, "The Origin of Cellular Life and the...

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2010-03-08 15:05:00

One of the biggest questions facing scientists today is how life began. How did non-living molecules come together in that primordial ooze to form the polymers of life? Scientists at the Georgia Institute of Technology have discovered that small molecules could have acted as "molecular midwives" in helping the building blocks of life's genetic material form long chains and may have assisted in selecting the base pairs of the DNA double helix. The research appears in the online early edition...

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2010-02-22 16:30:41

An extremely small RNA molecule created by a University of Colorado at Boulder team can catalyze a key reaction needed to synthesize proteins, the building blocks of life. The findings could be a substantial step toward understanding "the very origin of Earthly life," the lead researcher contends. The smallest RNA enzyme ever known to perform a cellular chemical reaction is described in a paper published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. The paper was written...

2010-02-02 10:15:23

Earth's chemical energy powered early life through 'the most revolutionary idea in biology since Darwin' For 80 years it has been accepted that early life began in a 'primordial soup' of organic molecules before evolving out of the oceans millions of years later. Today the 'soup' theory has been overturned in a pioneering paper in BioEssays which claims it was the Earth's chemical energy, from hydrothermal vents on the ocean floor, which kick-started early life. "Textbooks have it that life...

2010-01-08 16:09:43

The study was carried out by 3 European researchers, 1 from Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona A research published in Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences rejects the theory that the origin of life stems from a system of self-catalytic molecules capable of experiencing Darwinian evolution without the need of RNA or DNA and their replication. The research, which was carried out with the participation of Mauro Santos, researcher of the Department of Genetics and...

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2009-12-14 12:24:57

A team of researchers from the Astrobiology Centre (INTA-CSIC) has shown that hydrogen cyanide, urea and other substances considered essential to the formation of the most basic biological molecules can be obtained from the salt Prussian blue. In order to carry out this study, published in the journal Chemistry & Biodiversity, the scientists recreated the chemical conditions of the early Earth. "We have shown that when Prussian blue is dissolved in ammoniac solutions it produces hydrogen...


Word of the Day
penuche
  • A fudgelike confection of brown sugar, cream or milk, and chopped nuts.
'Penuche' is a variant of 'panocha,' a coarse grade of sugar made in Mexico. 'Panocha' probably comes from the Spanish 'panoja, panocha,' ear of grain.
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