[ExI] Chemical Origins of Life (was Re: Panbiogenesis)

BillK pharos at gmail.com
Fri Feb 3 11:43:01 UTC 2012


On Fri, Feb 3, 2012 at 10:53 AM, Kelly Anderson  wrote:
<snip>
> Stating this more carefully... The largest structure we have
> synthesized in the laboratory at this point is a very primitive
> cell-type wall built of lipids. No doubt, there are tens of millions
> of atoms that go into these structures, but they are extremely simple
> compared to a bacteria, and by no means do they approach reproducing
> life forms. They don't even approximate useful cell walls, as there
> are no holes... and even bacteria need to eat and poo.
>
> We have no mechanism yet to describe the production of proteins
> containing more than a paultry number of amino acids. Amino acids
> don't spontaneously form polymers without a lot of tricky assistance.
>
> I would be pretty darn impressed if we could show a plausible scenario
> for the spontaneous emergence of just the citric acid cycle.
>
> In conclusion, it is ridiculous to expect to observe abiogenesis
> directly in the lab. It is many trillions of times more likely that a
> chicken would spontaneously give birth to a dinosaur without
> assistance from Jack Horner!
>
> Nevertheless, there is enough of a lead to continue to investigate how
> abiogenesis could have occurred terrestrially. Even if you buy into
> panbiogenesis, life had to arise somewhere first, or "God Did It"(TM).
>
> The most interesting concept I've run into during these studies is
> emergence. Totally fascinating stuff that.
>

Chemists Synthesize Artificial Cell Membrane
ScienceDaily (Jan. 25, 2012)

<http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/01/120125132822.htm>

Chemists have taken an important step in making artificial life forms
from scratch. Using a novel chemical reaction, they have created
self-assembling cell membranes, the structural envelopes that contain
and support the reactions required for life.
------
The real value of this discovery might reside in its simplicity. From
commercially available precursors, the scientists needed just one
preparatory step to create each starting lipid chain.
-----------------------------


BillK


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