Complexity Digest 2004.37 - 01


How Life Began on Earth: A Status Report, Earth and Planetary Science Letters Bookmark and Share

Excerpts: There are two fundamental requirements for life as we know it, liquid water and organic polymers, such as nucleic acids and proteins. Water provides the medium for chemical reactions and the polymers carry out the central biological functions of replication and catalysis. (...) If the basic components water and organic polymers were, or are, present on other bodies in our solar system and beyond, it is reasonable to assume that a similar series of steps that gave rise of life on Earth could occur elsewhere.