Origins of life and evolution of the biosphere

, Volume 33, Issue 3, pp 235–242

The 1953 Stanley L. Miller Experiment: Fifty Years of Prebiotic Organic Chemistry


DOI: 10.1023/A:1024807125069

Cite this article as:
Lazcano, A. & Bada, J.L. Orig Life Evol Biosph (2003) 33: 235. doi:10.1023/A:1024807125069


The field of prebiotic chemistry effectively began with a publicationin Science 50 years ago by Stanley L. Miller on the spark discharge synthesis of amino acids and other compounds using a mixture of reduced gases that were thought to represent the components of the atmosphere on the primitive Earth. On the anniversary of this landmark publication, weprovide here an accounting of the events leading to the publication of the paper. We also discuss the historical aspects that lead up to the landmark Miller experiment.

prebiotic chemistryreducing atmosphereStreckersynthesiselectric discharges

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Facultad de CienciasCd. UniversitariaMexico D.F.Mexico (author for correspondence, e-mail
  2. 2.Scripps Institution of OceanographyUniversity of California at San DiegoLa JollaU.S.A