, Volume 67, Issue 8, pp 378-383

First online:

Metabolic microspheres

Origins and evolution
  • Sidney W. FoxAffiliated withInstitute for Molecular and Cellular Evolution, University of Miami

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A systematic review of catalytic activities in thermal proteinoids and microspheres aggregated therefrom yields some new inferences on the origins and evolution of metabolism. Experiments suggest that, instead of being inert, protocells were already biochemically and cytophysically competent. The emergence and refinement of metabolism ab initio is thus partly traced conceptually. When the principle of molecular self-instruction, as of amino acids in peptide synthesis, is taken into account as a concomitant of natural selection, an expanded theory of organismic evolution, including saltations, emerges.