Origins of gene, genetic code, protein and life: comprehensive view of life systems from a GNC-SNS primitive genetic code hypothesis

Abstract

We have investigated the origin of genes, the genetic code, proteins and life using six indices (hydropathy, α-helix, β-sheet and β-turn formabilities, acidic amino acid content and basic amino acid content) necessary for appropriate three-dimensional structure formation of globular proteins. From the analysis of microbial genes, we have concluded that newly-born genes are products of nonstop frames (NSF) on antisense strands of microbial GC-rich genes [GC-NSF(a)] and from SNS repeating sequences [(SNS)n] similar to the GC-NSF(a) (S and N mean G or C and either of four bases, respectively). We have also proposed that the universal genetic code used by most organisms on the earth presently could be derived from a GNC-SNS primitive genetic code. We have further presented the [GADV]-protein world hypothesis of the origin of life as well as a hypothesis of protein production, suggesting that proteins were originally produced by random peptide formation of amino acids restricted in specific amino acid compositions termed as GNC-, SNS and GC-NSF(a)-0th order structures of proteins. The [GADV]-protein world hypothesis is primarily derived from the GNC-primitive genetic code hypothesis. It is also expected that basic properties of extant genes and proteins could be revealed by considerations based on the scenario with four stages

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This review is a modified English version of the paper, which was written in Japanese and published inViva Origino 2001 29 66–85.

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Ikehara, K. Origins of gene, genetic code, protein and life: comprehensive view of life systems from a GNC-SNS primitive genetic code hypothesis. J Biosci 27, 165–186 (2002). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF02703773

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Keywords

  • GNC-SNS primitive genetic code hypothesis
  • origin of genes
  • origin of genetic code
  • origin of life
  • origin of proteins