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One of life's greatest mysteries is how it began. Scientists have pinned it down to roughly this:
Some chemical reactions occurred about 4 billion years ago - perhaps in a primordial tidal soup or maybe with help of volcanoes or possibly at the bottom of the sea or between the mica sheets - to create biology.
Now scientists have created something in the lab that is tantalizingly close to what might have happened. It's not life, they stress, but it certainly gives the science community a whole new data set to chew on.
The researchers, at the Scripps Research Institute, created molecules that self-replicate and even evolve and compete to win or lose. If that sounds exactly like life, read on to learn the controversial and thin distinction.
Then things went surprisingly further.'Immortalized'
Specifically, the researchers synthesized RNA enzymes that can replicate themselves without the help of any proteins or other cellular components, and the process proceeds indefinitely. "Immortalized" RNA, they call it, at least within the limited conditions of a laboratory.
More significantly, the scientists then mixed different RNA enzymes that had replicated, along with some of the raw material they were working with, and let them compete in what's sure to be the next big hit: "Survivor: Test Tube."
Remarkably, they bred.
And now and then, one of these survivors would screw up, binding with some other bit of raw material it hadn't been using. Hmm. That's exactly what life forms do ...
Originally posted by alyosha1981
Ya this is cool indeed, imagine how far they could take this! I wonder what the religious rammifications would be though?