Cellular synthesis

d hayman hayman at mcn.net
Wed Jan 17 18:59:40 EST 1996

slg at getnet.com (Sherman L. Griffith) writes:
> I hope I got the right news group.  If not,  I'm _sure_
> someone will let me know. :-)
> I have read several articles over the last few years on the
> origins of (cellular) life.   I want to get some references
> for further reading.
> I gather from my past reading that:
> a)  Amino acids are found to form "naturally" in some the
> hypothesized primordial soup recipes of the very distant
> past,  and
> b)  Small,  or short,  segments of (random) DNA or RNA have
> also been observed to form in the aforementioned soup,  and
> c)  "bags' of protein similar in a general way to the
> protein  "sac" surrounding a cell have also been observed to
> form in the soup under some conditions (and after further
> "marinating").
> Please forgive any mistakes of fact or terminaligy - I'm an
> engineer,  not a Bio-type.  And my memory is not what it
> ever was.
> What is the status of the above research results?  Has
> anyone got a DNA fragment to "go" into the sac?  Have
> mitochondria complexes been observed to form?  Do they
> contain RNA strands?  How are they formed?  Does one (only)
> need DNA to "enter" to cause life processes to begin?
> Can one kick-start this process,  and if so,  how?
> I'm really curious.  If the above (memories of) items are
> correct,  then is anyone any nearer to creating/building
> cellular life? ( People would really have "kittens" over
> that!)  It appears that the research folks have a lot of the
> pieces to play with.  And the pieces can form naturally,  at
> least under soup-type conditions.
> Are there any current reference articles on this subject?
> Who's doing research in this area?  I have found almost
> nothing on the 'Net on this subject.  Is this because its a
> non-issue?  Or is it just more pseudo-scientific crap that
> got through my "filter" by mistake?
> Flame-free discussion would be welcome,  either publicly or
> at my e-mail address.
>                                  S.L.G.
>                 "Are you suggesting coconuts migrate?"
>                            - Michael Palin -
Please forgive my rather dated memory, but its been about 10 years ago that I recall a Northeastern biologist by the name of Lynn Margulius working alot in this area.  At the time, I believe she was considered psuedo-fringe, perhaps due to her association with the Gaia (-10 sp) Hypothesis.  She was concerned with the origins of cell organelles and the development of photosynthesis.  her contention and work supported the idea that celluar components were often created outside the the cell, and through phagocytosis or whatever, assumed a symbiontic relationship within the aggressor cell.  Hope this may help.

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