ORIGIN OF LIFE: QUANTUM CHEMISTRY SOLVES ONE OF GENETICS’ BIGGEST MYSTERIES USING AMINO ACIDS FROM SPACE

Biotechnology quantum physics science. Technology

For decades, scientists have tried to figure out why the genetic basis for life on Earth involved 20 key amino acids, when just 13 would have been enough to jump-start the evolution of all the proteins we’d need.

Now, an international team of researchers has created a quantum chemistry model that explains what triggered the inclusion of the additional seven—a spike in the levels of oxygen in our biosphere, coupled with the discovery that the newer amino acids have a greater chemical reactivity than the older ones, meaning they’re more adaptable. A paper describing the research was published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.      ORIGIN OF LIFE

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