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:
TAG: Critical pairing

(Date:8/3/2015)... , Aug. 3, 2015 Synaptics, Inc. (Nasdaq: ... solutions, today announced that members of the executive management ... Pacific Crest Global Technology Leadership Forum on Tuesday, August ... will be held at the Sonnenalp Resort in ... presentation may include forward-looking information. An audio webcast of ...
(Date:7/31/2015)... , 31 de julio de 2015 ... (ICG-10,  www.icg-10.org ) del 22 al 25 de octubre ... La conferencia celebra su décimo aniversario este ... convertido en una de las reuniones anuales más influyentes ... es una de las conferencias científicas más dinámicas, entusiastas ...
(Date:7/31/2015)... SHENZHEN , Chine, 31 juillet 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... (ICG-10, www.icg-10.org ) sera organisée par le ... Shenzhen en Chine. ... année. Depuis son inauguration en 2006, l,ICG est ... influentes dans le domaine des « omiques » et c,est ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):La 10ª Conferencia Internacional sobre Genómica (ICG-10) comienza en octubre 2La 10ª Conferencia Internacional sobre Genómica (ICG-10) comienza en octubre 3La 10e International Conference on Genomics (ICG-10) doit s'ouvrir en octobre 2La 10e International Conference on Genomics (ICG-10) doit s'ouvrir en octobre 3
(Date:9/2/2015)... Axovant Sciences Ltd. (NYSE:  AXON), a leading clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company ... at three investor conferences: , Wednesday, September 9 ... New York at the New York ... at the BioCentury NewsMakers Conference in New York ... , Thursday, September 17 at 9:30 AM at the ...
(Date:9/2/2015)... , ... September 02, 2015 , ... ... and managed with the use of special anti-vascular endothelial growth factor agents given ... more patients, currently does not have a scientific protocol for the many millions ...
(Date:9/2/2015)... ... September 02, 2015 , ... ... botanical and plant-derived compounds. BCC Research reveals in its new report that ... this market defines the category and generates the most market demand. , ...
(Date:9/2/2015)... Israel , September 2, 2015 ... TASE: BOLT) ("BioLight" or the "Company"), a firm ... in ophthalmology and cancer diagnostics, announced today that ... of glaucoma will be delivered at the Ophthalmology ... the European Society of Cataract & Refractive Surgeons ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Axovant Sciences To Present At Upcoming Investor Conferences 2Axovant Sciences To Present At Upcoming Investor Conferences 3StemCell GeneticMed Announces That It Has Started Stem Cell Treatments for Age Related Dry Macular Degeneration (AMG) 2Plant-derived Compounds Poised to Assume Greater Role in Global Drug Markets, According to BCC Research 2Plant-derived Compounds Poised to Assume Greater Role in Global Drug Markets, According to BCC Research 3Presentations to Highlight BioLight's IOPtiMate[TM] System at Upcoming European Ophthalmology Conferences 2Presentations to Highlight BioLight's IOPtiMate[TM] System at Upcoming European Ophthalmology Conferences 3
Cached News: