Next Article in Journal
Pilin Processing Follows a Different Temporal Route than That of Archaellins in Methanococcus maripaludis
Next Article in Special Issue
How Amino Acids and Peptides Shaped the RNA World
Previous Article in Journal
Does a Barcoding Gap Exist in Prokaryotes? Evidences from Species Delimitation in Cyanobacteria
Previous Article in Special Issue
The Place of RNA in the Origin and Early Evolution of the Genetic Machinery
Article Menu

Export Article

Open AccessArticle
Life 2015, 5(1), 65-84; doi:10.3390/life5010065

Characterization of RNA-Like Oligomers from Lipid-Assisted Nonenzymatic Synthesis: Implications for Origin of Informational Molecules on Early Earth

Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER), Pune, Maharashtra 411008, India
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Niles Lehman
Received: 16 October 2014 / Accepted: 23 December 2014 / Published: 5 January 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Origins and Early Evolution of RNA)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1347 KB, uploaded 5 January 2015]   |  

Abstract

Prebiotic polymerization had to be a nonenzymatic, chemically driven process. These processes would have been particularly favored in scenarios which push reaction regimes far from equilibrium. Dehydration-rehydration (DH-RH) cycles are one such regime thought to have been prevalent on prebiotic Earth in niches like volcanic geothermal pools. The present study defines the optimum DH-RH reaction conditions for lipid-assisted polymerization of nucleotides. The resultant products were characterized to understand their chemical makeup. Primarily, our study demonstrates that the resultant RNA-like oligomers have abasic sites, which means these oligomers lack information-carrying capability because of losing most of their bases during the reaction process. This results from low pH and high temperature conditions, which, importantly, also allows the formation of sugar-phosphate oligomers when ribose 5'-monophosphates are used as the starting monomers instead. Formation of such oligomers would have permitted sampling of a large variety of bases on a preformed polymer backbone, resulting in “prebiotic phosphodiester polymers” prior to the emergence of modern RNA-like molecules. This suggests that primitive genetic polymers could have utilized bases that conferred greater N-glycosyl bond stability, a feature crucial for information propagation in low pH and high temperature regimes of early Earth. View Full-Text
Keywords: dehydration-rehydration cycles; prebiotic chemistry; lipid-assisted polymerization; abasic sites; sugar-phosphate backbones dehydration-rehydration cycles; prebiotic chemistry; lipid-assisted polymerization; abasic sites; sugar-phosphate backbones
Figures

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

Supplementary material

Review Report

Scifeed alert for new publications

Never miss any articles matching your research from any publisher
  • Get alerts for new papers matching your research
  • Find out the new papers from selected authors
  • Updated daily for 49'000+ journals and 6000+ publishers
  • Define your Scifeed now

SciFeed Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Mungi, C.V.; Rajamani, S. Characterization of RNA-Like Oligomers from Lipid-Assisted Nonenzymatic Synthesis: Implications for Origin of Informational Molecules on Early Earth. Life 2015, 5, 65-84.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Life EISSN 2075-1729 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top