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Peptide Emergence, Evolution and Selection on the Primitive Earth

II. The Primary Pump Scenario

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Lectures in Astrobiology

Abstract

We propose a dynamic scenario for the emergence and evolution of peptides on the primitive Earth, through a molecular engine (the primary pump), which works at ambient temperature and continuously generates, elongates and complexifies sequential peptides. This new scenario is based on a cyclic chemical reaction sequence that could have taken place on tidal beaches; it requires a buffered ocean, emerged land and a nitrosating atmosphere. We show that the primitive Earth during the Hadean may have satisfied all of these requirements. This scenario is not necessarily what actually happened, but it represents a global approach of peptide prebiotic synthesis, and most of its parts are accessible to experiment. As it develops, it may open up a gateway to the emergence of homochirality and the catalytic activities of peptides.

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Muriel Gargaud Bernard Barbier Hervé Martin Jacques Reisse

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Commeyras, A., Boiteau, L., Vandenabeele-Trambouze, O., Selsis, F. (2005). Peptide Emergence, Evolution and Selection on the Primitive Earth. In: Gargaud, M., Barbier, B., Martin, H., Reisse, J. (eds) Lectures in Astrobiology. Advances in Astrobiology and Biogeophysics. Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg. https://doi.org/10.1007/10913406_16

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