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Stranger than you can imagine - Input Junkie
October 20th, 2009
06:13 am


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Stranger than you can imagine
Life may have begun in proton-powered rock pores. If you look at what all living creatures have in common, it's less than you might expect-- in particular, the cells membranes aren't similar, and pumping protons might be a more basic energy source than chemical bonds.

It's at least conceivable that the first life was in serpentine (a mineral-- if there's a garden of Eden pun in there, I couldn't find it) rock in the early, acidic ocean. It had DNA, RNA and proteins, a universal genetic code, ribosomes (the protein-building factories), ATP and a proton-powered enzyme for making ATP. I have no idea how or why it would have grown a skin.

And I'm wondering if this is part of the Fermi Paradox-- any old watery planet could have a primordial soup, but what are the odds of the right sort of rock in the right sort of ocean?

Link thanks to andrewducker.

(2 comments | Leave a comment)

[User Picture]
Date:October 20th, 2009 10:38 am (UTC)
If you go to the bottom of the article there's a link to http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn17987-how-life-evolved-10-steps-to-the-first-cells.html
which takes you through it step by step :->
[User Picture]
Date:October 20th, 2009 10:52 am (UTC)
oddly enough where I come from has some of the richest deposits of serpentine in the world. You can pick lumps of it up on the beach.
I claim the place of origins!
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