Lecture 14_Origins of Life

Lecture 14_Origins of Life

ORIGINS Planet earth 4.6 bya The first life forms 3.5 bya The first eukaryotes 3.0bya The origin of an oxygen-rich atmosphere 2.1bya

The Mother of all questions 1. Not observable 2. Even simple life very complex LifeBoiled Down

4 Problems / Questions 1. How did organic molecules arise from non-organic materials? 2. How were organic monomers assembled into complex polymers? 3. How did the self-replicating molecules needed for inheritance arise? 4. How were the organic molecules packaged into membranes with an internal chemistry different from their surroundings?

1. How did organic molecules arise from non-organic materials? Miller & Urey (1950)

1. How did organic molecules arise from non-organic materials? From space?

2. How were organic monomers assembled into complex polymers? 2. How were organic monomers assembled into complex polymers?

2. How were organic monomers assembled into complex polymers? 3. How did self-replicating molecules needed for inheritance arise?

RNA World = Variation for Free! DNA VS. RNA

4. First membranes? All spontaneous processes proceed in the direction that increases entropy of the universe (entropy = a measure of the disorder in a system)

4. First membranes? ORDER FOR FREE! Lipids in water Bilayers form spontaneously! Why?

The First Membranes Order For Free! Lipids in water Initial State Final State

Lipids Free molecules (High S)

Fluid membrane (Intermediate S) Water Ice-like shells

(Low S) Free molecules (High S) Spontaneous biological order at the

expense of universal disorder! Other examples of entropydriven order self-assembly Self-folding of small polypeptides

TED Talks Lee CroninMaking Matter Come Alive How does he propose to define life? TED Talks Lee CroninMaking

Matter Come Alive How is Lee Cronins lab attempting to make matter come alive? What are some of the implications of his research? How does he propose to define life?

The Earliest Life was ProkaryoticHow Did Eukaryotes Evolve? The Origin of the Mitochondria

and Chloroplasts: Early 1900s Konstantin Merezhkovsky Chlorophyll bodiesbehave like independent organisms They are symbionts, not organs

The Origin of the Mitochondria and Chloroplasts: Early 1960s Lynn Margulis The Origin of Mitosing Eukaryotic Cells Convincingly developed the view that

chloroplasts and mitochondria have prokaryotic origins National Medal of Science, 1999 Theory of Endosymbiosis

Margulis Data Characteristic Size Ribosomes Membrane

DNA Eukaryote Prokaryote

Mitochondria Chloroplast Quick Side-Note

Another example of non-mendelian genetics! Margulis Data Mitochondria and Chloroplasts reproduce by binary fission! Total Independence?

Mitochondrial Genome Is the loss of genes unusual? NO! Ants and Mealybugs

Moranella bacteria inside a Tremblaya bacterium inside a Mealybug! Is the loss of genes unusual? NO!

Other Endosymbionts? Cilia and Flagella were once spirochete bacteria? Viral origin of the nucleus?

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