Scientists Might Have The Answer On How Life On Earth Emerged

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Since forever, human beings have been fascinated by the unknown. We have made many discoveries on our planet. Satisfied, we moved on to the other place that caught our attention: space. But despite the breakthroughs we did and planned to do, there is one crucial question we, as a race, were not able to answer: how did life begin on Earth?

It is known that everything that has life is comprised of the same 20 amino acids. But did they combine to constitute the first protein molecules? A team of scientist believes that they might have found the response to the great question. The team from the Georgia Institute of Technology’s Center for Chemical Evolution did an experiment that demonstrated how the ancestors of the protein molecules formed a connection.

In their experiment, the researchers selected some amino acids, such as lysine, arginine, and histidine, and combined them with other three non-biological amino acids. Then, the researchers created the same conditions that had been present around 4 billion years ago, when life is believed to have started. After this, they put the amino acids in water in which they previously incorporated hydroxy acids, a component of water before life. The water was heated up to 85 degrees Celsius (185 F) until it evaporated.

How life on Earth emerged

The result was surprising. The biological, and not the non-biological, amino acids united with each other with the help of amines; they formed peptides which resembled the already existing proteins. Lysine, which was not believed to be able to create chains, actually succeeded in doing just that.

With these discoveries, the researchers could speculate that ready-made amino acids chains were present before life created proteins. Also, as only biological amino acids created chains, it is understandable why life is comprised of only 20 amino acids despite their number is way higher.

The scientists concluded that the amino acids that linked did that because they had a positive reaction with each other without many faulty outcomes. But they could not have been able to do so if it weren’t for the wet and dry cycles. This experiment also implicates that as amino acids link up with each other naturally, such reactions could have happened in other parts of the universe, which means that life could be possible in other solar systems.


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13 Comments

  1. So creating chemical reactions in a tightly controlled lab environment is supposed to assure us that life evolved by a random chain of events in a volatile system that can only be imagined to be in existence?

    1. …not to mention that those “selected” amino acids happened to be there at that time (along with the “previously incorporated hydroxy acids”) 😉

  2. This experiment only shows amino acids can link together and form chain molecules. To extrapolate to creating life is too big of an assumption to make sense of. Let’s take the substructure parts of any organism, shake, stir and cook long enough and we randomly create a living being? The problem is all signals point to intelligent design for our planet and every living thing on it. That means as being created… We are accountable to our creator… THAT is the true mystery of life, not HOW it was created but WHY.

  3. Exactly, now we know that is was a team of scientists in a high tech lab somewhere, in a highly controlled environment that created the environment for life to begin.
    Can’t wait until you folks can make a single eyeball or finger!

    1. The “highly controlled environment” is necessary to replicate the condition of the primordial earth where these event took place… Your trolling is weak.

      1. The only way to replicate the ” condition of the primordial earth” is to have indisputable proof by way of observation and measurement. The scientific community is at great odds as to the conditions. This article takes only one view. At best it is a wild guess.

  4. I find it rather more likely than the idea — I won’t dignify it by calling it a theory — that Invisible Sky Ghost breathed life into a handful of clay, then took a rib from his creation to create the opposite sex. Don’t you?

    1. This statement shows a lack of the understanding of the nature of God and who He is.

      Believing in the scientific impossibility that the universe and everything in it started from nothing is a viable alternative?

      1. I just love how you turn this around and throw your impossible to prove statements as pure facts.
        “The scientific impossibility that is the universe” that statement only goes to show how you don’t understand science and… anything much…

  5. These widely published findings are certainly of interest.
    But they merely indicate that this set of amino acids have a greater propensity for interaction in some conditions.
    This may well have relevance as a necessary condition for biology to evolve.

    However, then we come to the (usual) hype typical of pop-sci articles and sometimes in original papers by funding hungry researchers:

    “there is one crucial question we, as a race, were not able to answer: how did life begin on Earth?” … “they might have found the response to the great question”. Now we are in the realm of utter nonsense!

    Whatever the mechanisms involved we can be quite sure that abiogenesis was an extremely intricate process. We do have, at last, one plausible scenario involving the deep sea alkaline hydrothermal vents:

    There is a diversity of opinion on what constitutes “life”. A very common practice is to use it as a synonym for biology, which I gather is that of your question.
    So, on that basis I will explain:
    Firstly, there is absolutely no evidence of intent being involved. What all our observations indicate is an evolutionary process whereby random occurrences are given directionality by means of a rectifying mechanism. In the case of established biology this is primarily the process of natural selection.
    Similar effects are at play in the transition to biology from simpler chemistries, the process we call abiogenesis. Early models for this occurrence were fraught with extreme improbabilities. For none of the DNA first, RNA first, protein first or cell membrane first models that are still bandied about are truly compatible with established laws of chemistry and physics. Robert Shapiro’s book “*Origins, a Skeptic’s Guide to the Creation of Life on Earth*”gave an exhaustive and definitive explanation of why this is the case. It is a “must read” for anybody seriously interested in this subject.
    However, in these exciting times it is now becoming more widely recognized that the early notion that the first identifiable instances of biology were naked self replicating molecules (strands of DNA, RNA or protein) or “empty” lipid bubbles, is deeply flawed.
    It is unevidenced and, furthermore, cannot even be given a sound heuristic basis. It is one of those myths which has insidiously crept into scientific circles without serious challenge. Along with the equally impractical notions involving panspermia. Not to mention the feeble minded cop-out that “God did it”
    Today, a far more plausible model that is consistent with known principles of physics and chemistry derives from the discovery of the deep-sea alkaline hydrothermal vents.
    This model provides for the CO-EVOLUTION of enzymes, nucleotides and, most importantly, that oft overlooked but absolutely crucial component, a cell membrane equipped with means of selective influx of nutrients and efflux of wastes.
    The plumes generated by the vents provide vast matrices of catalytic cell-sized cavities, complete with suitable chemical precursors, flow, and favorable energetics that at last bring the probabilities within reasonable bounds.

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