Bio notes 3 - Zhaonan Liu Bio 101 CHEMISTRY AND THE ORIGIN...

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Zhaonan Liu August 29, 2007 Bio 101 Lecture 3 CHEMISTRY AND THE ORIGIN OF LIFE Any Scientific Theory of Origin Speculative and must be consistent with the laws of chemistry and physics. Must explain: • The process by which the first “living molecules” could appear. • The reason why this process does not operate now, but did once. • How a molecule could replicate itself (the first “replicator”). • How a molecule could evolve, including origin of variation natural selection Zircon crystals from sediments in west-central Australia. Uranium-Lead dating: 4.404 billion years, oldest rock Oldest fossils on Earth Stromatolites from W. Australia Layered mats of cyanobacteria (blue-green algae) that trap sediment Fossil stromatolites have a similar gross appearance Dated at 3.8 by thin sections reveal cellular elements resembling extant cyanobacteria Stanley Miller + Harold Urey experiment, 1953 Experiments in creating life Harold Urey, Nobel Prize 1934 for work on isotopes, discovery of ‘heavy’ Hydrogen Atmosphere: + water + heat + spark
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Bio notes 3 - Zhaonan Liu Bio 101 CHEMISTRY AND THE ORIGIN...

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