HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Critical pairing

How did life originate on Earth? Until now, there have only been theories to answer this question. One of the fundamental steps leading to living organisms is the development of molecules that can replicate and multiply themselves--the first genetic material. A team led by Ramanarayanan Krishnamurthy and Albert Eschenmoser at The Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California, is researching how this molecule might have looked.

Our own genetic material is DNA. Its backbone is made of sugar and phosphate building blocks. Like a strand of pearls, the four "letters" of the genetic code are arranged along this backbone. Two complementary strands of DNA form a double helix because the purine bases adenine (A) and guanine (G) form specific pairs with the pyrimidine bases thymine (T) and cytosine (C), attaching to each other through two or three docking sites. This type of structure could also be the basis for the first genetic material. However, it is doubtful that its backbone consisted of sugar and phosphate; it may have consisted of peptide-like building blocks. Amino acids, from which peptides are made, were already present in the "primordial soup". However, the bases may also have looked different in their primitive form.

To find the right track in searching for the origins of life, the team is trying to put together groups of potential building blocks from which primitive molecular information transmitters could have been made. The researchers have taken a pragmatic approach to their experiments. Compounds that they test do not need to fulfill specific chemical criteria; instead, they must pass their "genetic information" on to subsequent generations just as simply as the genetic molecules we know today--and their formation must have been possible under prebiotic conditions. Experiments with molecules related to the usual pyrimidine bases (pyrimidine is a six-membered aromatic ring containing four carbon and two nitrogen atoms), among others, seem
'"/>

Contact: R. Krishnamurthy
rkrishna@scripps.edu
John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
17-Nov-2006


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Critical protein prevents DNA damage from persisting through generations
2. Critical hearing gene helps send auditory messages to brain
3. Critical step traced in anthrax infection
4. Critical role in programmed cell death identified
5. Mouse study: Critical Down syndrome region isnt
6. Fish eyes could hold clue to repairing damaged retinas in humans
7. Pregnancy hormone key to repairing nerve cell damage
8. Getting on your nerves ... and repairing them
9. A silent pandemic: Industrial chemicals are impairing the brain development of children worldwide
10. Novel stem cell technology develops a new cell for repairing spinal cord injuries
11. Mice brains shrink during winter, impairing some learning and memory

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:3/9/2017)... VIEW, Calif. , March 9, 2017 ... 23andMe , the leading personal genetics company, are using ... now provide customers with personalized nutrition plans that consider ... but also genetic markers impacting how their body may ... food decision support platform uses biometrics such as Body ...
(Date:3/7/2017)... , March 7, 2017   HireVue , the ... global companies identify the best talent, faster, today announced ... Sales Officer (CSO) and Diana Kucer as ... out a seasoned executive team poised to drive continued growth ... on a year of record bookings in 2017. ...
(Date:3/2/2017)... -- Summary This report provides all the information ... and activities since 2010. ... Read the full report: http://www.reportlinker.com/p03605615-summary/view-report.html ... provides an in-depth insight into the partnering activity of one ... demand company reports are prepared upon purchase to ensure inclusion ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/26/2017)... ... April 26, 2017 , ... Looking ... team-building and cooking events company, offers one-of-a-kind gifts, ranging from gourmet cooking experiences ... California cuisine, and guests leave inspired with new cooking tips and techniques, thanks ...
(Date:4/26/2017)... Palo Alto, CA, USA (PRWEB) , ... April ... ... ComplianceOnline’s popular seminar on FDA’s GMP expectations for phase I clinical trials comes ... was attended by various biotechnology and pharma professionals representing FDA regulated organizations such ...
(Date:4/26/2017)... ... 26, 2017 , ... Baltimore bio tech firm, PathSensors, Inc., ... solution at the National Postal Forum 2017 in Baltimore, Maryland, May 21st through ... easy to use and low cost threat detection solution for government and commercial ...
(Date:4/26/2017)... RESTON, Va. (PRWEB) , ... April 26, 2017 ... ... to make headlines and drive high-level conversations among healthcare industry stakeholders, the discussion ... Healthcare Environment – taking place May 15-18, 2017 in Los Angeles, Calif. Hosted ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: