Hitchhiking molecules could have survived fiery comet collisions with Earth, UC Berkeley experiment shows

Simulating a high-velocity comet collision with Earth, a team of scientists has shown that organic molecules hitchhiking aboard a comet could have survived such an impact and seeded life on this planet.

The results give credence to the theory that the raw materials for life came from space and were assembled on Earth into the ancestors of proteins and DNA.

"Our results suggest that the notion of organic compounds coming from outer space can't be ruled out because of the severity of the impact event," said research geologist Jennifer G. Blank of the Department of Earth and Planetary Science in the College of Letters & Science at the University of California, Berkeley.

Blank and her colleagues Randy Winans and Mike Ahrens of the Chemistry Division of Argonne National Laboratory, and engineer-mathematician Gregory Miller of the Applied Numerical Algorithms Group of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, will report their preliminary findings on April 5 at the national meeting of the American Chemical Society in San Diego, Calif. The talk is part of an April 4-5 session on extraterrestrial organic chemistry organized by Blank and colleague Max P. Bernstein, a chemist in the Astrochemistry Laboratory at NASA Ames Research Center in California.

Blank's team shot a soda-can sized bullet into a nickel-sized metal target containing a teardrop of water mixed with amino acids, the building blocks of proteins. More than seventy varieties of amino acids have been found in meteorites - many the suspected cores of comets that smashed to earth - and are presumed to exist in interstellar dust clouds.

Not only did a good fraction of the amino acids survive the simulated comet collision, but many polymerized into chains of two, three and four amino acids, so-called peptides. Peptides with longer chains are called polypeptides, while even longer ones are called proteins.

"The neat thing is that we got every possible combination o

Contact: Robert Sanders
University of California - Berkeley

Page: 1 2 3 4

Related biology news :

1. Hitchhiking bacteria could compromise the detection of life on Mars
2. Tiny molecules have big potential as cancer drugs, Stanford researcher believes
3. Synthesized molecules studied as weapon to stop cell division in cancer cells
4. Scientists reinvent DNA as template to produce organic molecules
5. Sweet success in targeting sugar molecules to cells in living animals
6. UC Riverside researcher takes snapshots of the movement of molecules in a billionth of a second
7. Scientists pinpoint molecules that generate synapses
8. Two molecules work together to aid transport of immune cells, UT Southwestern researchers find
9. Controlling biomolecules with magnetic tweezers
10. Water molecules clump more loosely than previously thought
11. Creating polymers that act like biomolecules

Post Your Comments:
(Date:10/8/2015)... , 8. Oktober 2015 ... global tätiges Unternehmen des Bereiches Tracking, hat ... mit der Gefängnisbehörde Virginias (Department of Corrections ... elektronische Überwachungsdienste für alle Strafen geliefert werden, ... Cassell , Präsident für den Amerikanischen Kontinent ...
(Date:10/7/2015)... 8, 2015 --> ... Cards (FPC) during third quarter 2015 amounted to around 960 ... 860 MSEK that was communicated 20 August 2015. ... delivery capacity and a continued growing demand for the company,s ... to be higher than during the third quarter. The revenue ...
(Date:10/6/2015)... Oct. 6, 2015 Track Group, Inc. (OTCQX: ... it has signed a contract with the Virginia Department ... full range of sentences under the Department,s oversight. ... Americas. "This contract with the Virginia DOC will expand ... and advances our position as a trusted leader in ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/9/2015)... and ROCKVILLE, Md. ... ("ITI"), a privately-held biotechnology company developing next generation ... that it has entered into an exclusive worldwide ... products for the treatment or prevention of any ... of the agreement, Immunomic Therapeutics will receive an ...
(Date:10/9/2015)... ... October 09, 2015 , ... Leading microbial genomics startup uBiome today launched the ... relationship between weight management and the microbiome. The study uses the ResearchKit framework, designed ... iPhone app. , The uBiome app is available as a free download from the ...
(Date:10/8/2015)... 2015  Genetic testing for mutations beyond those currently ... more couples at risk of having a child with ... the 2015 American Society of Human Genetics (ASHG) Annual ... Baltimore, Maryland . The study is one of ... ) are presenting at the conference this week demonstrating ...
(Date:10/8/2015)... Maryland , October 8, 2015 ... http://www.GoldmanResearch.com .   --> Goldman Small ... in the small cap and microcap sectors, announced ... research report on PharmaCyte Biotech, Inc. (OTCQB - ... focused on developing and preparing treatments for cancer ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: