A model for the modular evolution of rna addressing open questions on the origin of life

Carlos Briones*, Michael Stich, Susanna C. Manrubia

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference abstract

Abstract

A main unsolved problem in the RNA world scenario for the origin of life is how a template-dependent RNA polymerase ribozyme emerged from short RNA oligomers generated by random polymerization of ribonucleotides (Joyce and Orgel 2006). Current estimates establish a minimum size about 165 nt long for such a ribozyme (Johnston et al. 2001), a length three to four times that of the longest RNA oligomers obtained by random polymerization on clay mineral surfaces (Huang and Ferris 2003, 2006). To overcome this gap, we have developed a stepwise model of ligation-based, modular evolution of RNA (Briones et al. 2009) whose main conceptual steps are summarized in Figure 1. This scenario has two main advantages with respect to previous hypotheses put forward for the origin of the RNA world: i) short RNA....
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)429-432
Number of pages4
JournalOrigins of Life and Evolution of Biospheres
Volume40
Issue number4-5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2010
EventOpen Questions on the Origins of Life 2009 - San Sebastian-Donostia, Spain
Duration: 20 May 200923 May 2009

Bibliographical note

Workshop OQOL’09: Open Questions on the Origins of Life 2009

Keywords

  • functional complexity
  • modular evolution
  • Rna ligation
  • Rna replicase
  • Rna world
  • hairpin
  • ribozyme

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