Chemical Evolution: Origin Of Life [ADP-vol135]

$50.00

This book addresses some important open questions in this interdisciplinary field of research. In spite of its broad scope, ranging from the earliest evidence of life on earth to the search for extraterrestrial intelligence, the main focus is on chemical evolution. Once the macromolecules of life were formed, the evolution of the earliest life forms enhanced the importance of chirality. This led to the highly asymmetric environment of the macromolecules of the living cell the hallmark of life itself. The subject of chirality, in particular, is discussed in depth: the status of the weak force as the only true chiral influence is presented. A substantial number of papers review both the theoretical as well as the experimental basis of the origin of biochirality.

A second broad area discussed in detail is the RNA world. Some successes of this hypothesis are highlighted; the hierarchy of previous evolutionary stages leading to the origin of life, such as the pyrophosphate world, are considered. The question is raised whether useful hints may still be inferred from molecular fossils existing in contemporary cells.

Description

This book addresses some important open questions in this interdisciplinary field of research. In spite of its broad scope, ranging from the earliest evidence of life on earth to the search for extraterrestrial intelligence, the main focus is on chemical evolution. Once the macromolecules of life were formed, the evolution of the earliest life forms enhanced the importance of chirality. This led to the highly asymmetric environment of the macromolecules of the living cell the hallmark of life itself. The subject of chirality, in particular, is discussed in depth: the status of the weak force as the only true chiral influence is presented. A substantial number of papers review both the theoretical as well as the experimental basis of the origin of biochirality.

A second broad area discussed in detail is the RNA world. Some successes of this hypothesis are highlighted; the hierarchy of previous evolutionary stages leading to the origin of life, such as the pyrophosphate world, are considered. The question is raised whether useful hints may still be inferred from molecular fossils existing in contemporary cells.

Contents

  • The Origin, Evolution, and Distribution of Life in the Universe
    C. Ponnamperuma
  • Chemical Origin and Early Evolution of Biological Energy Conversion
    H. Baltscheffsky
  • Phosphate in Models for Chemical Evolution
    G. Arrhenius, B. Gedulin and Mojzsis
  • Evolution in an RNA World
    P. Schuster
  • Small Pathogenic RNAs of Plants: Living Fossils of the RNA World?
    T.O. Diener
  • The Weak Force and the Origin of Life
    A.J. MacDermott
  • The Origin of Chirality, the Role of Phase Transitions and Their Induction in Amino Acids
    A. Salam
  • Spontaneous Regulating Mechanisms That May Have Led to the Origin of Life
    J. Chela-Flores
  • Chirality and the Origin of Life
    R. Navarro Gonzalez, R.K. Khanna and C. Ponnamperuma
  • >Search for Phase Transitions Changing Molecular Chirality
    A. Figureau, E. Duval and A. Boukenter
  • Theoretical and Experimental Studies on the Possibility of Chirality Dependent Time Direction in Molecules
    A.S. Garay
  • Extraterrestrial Intelligences
    J. Heidmann

Discussion Sessions

  • Biochemical Markers in Precambian Sediments–Indian Subcontinent
    S.S. Rane, A.V. Patankar, M.S. Chadha, B. Udayraj and S.M. Naqvi
  • Practicabilities and Limits of Stereospecific Autocatalysis: An Experimental Approach
    T. Buhse, W. Thiemann, D. Lavabre and J.-C. Micheau
  • Ionizing Radiation and Chemical Processing of Waters on Early Earth
    I.G. Draganic and S.I. Vujosevic
  • Chemical Effects of Ionizing Radiation and Sonic Energy in the Context of Chemical Evolution
    A. Negron-Mendoza and G. Albarran
  • Differences in Radiolysis Behavior of D,L-Amino Acid in Primary Stage and Thermodynamic Equilibrium State
    W.Q. Wang, J.L. Wu and J. Jiang
  • Experimental Searches for the Origin of Biomolecular Asymmetry
    L. Keszthelyi
  • True and False Chirality
    L.D. Barron
  • Chiral Interaction and Biomolecular Evolution
    G. Gilat
  • Chiral Forces and Molecular Dissymmetry
    R. Mohan
  • Viroids and Viruses at the Origin of Organized Life
    L.J. Boya and P. Boya
  • The Role of Neoteny and Sociogenesis in the Evolution of Cell Structure
    V.J.A. Novak

ISBN 0-937194-31-X, 1993, Hardcover, 332 pages