Origins of Life and Evolution of Biospheres

, Volume 37, Issue 1, pp 47–54 | Cite as

Condensation of amino acids to form peptides in aqueous solution induced by the oxidation of sulfur(iv): An oxidative model for prebiotic peptide formation

  • Fei Chen
  • Dan YangEmail author


Condensation of amino acids to peptides is an important step during the origin of life. However, up to now, successful explanations for plausible prebiotic peptide formation pathways have been limited. Here we report that the oxidation of sulfur (IV) can induce the condensation reaction of carboxylic acids and amines to form amides, and the condensation reaction of amino acids to form peptides. This might be a general reaction contributing to prebiotic peptide formation.


Condensation Sulfur dioxide Amino acid Oxidation Prebiotic peptide formation 


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© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of ChemistryThe University of Hong KongHong KongP. R. China

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