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The Future of Origin of Life Research: Bridging Decades-Old Divisions

Institute of Molecular Evolution, University of Düsseldorf, 40225 Düsseldorf, Germany
School of Chemistry, University of Glasgow, Glasgow G128QQ, UK
Department of Chemistry, University of Cambridge, Lensfield Road, Cambridge CB2 1EW, UK
School of Earth Sciences, University of Bristol, Bristol BS8 1RL, UK
Environmental Microbial Genomics, Laboratoire Ampère, Ecole Centrale de Lyon, Université de Lyon, 69130 Ecully, France
Origins Center, Department of Earth Sciences, Utrecht University, 3584 CB Utrecht, The Netherlands
Space Science Center (ANGKASA), Institute of Climate Change, Level 3, Research Complex, National University of Malaysia, UKM Bangi 43600, Selangor, Malaysia
Department of Physical Chemistry, University of Chemistry and Technology, Prague, Technicka 5, 16628 Prague 6–Dejvice, Czech Republic
UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Chemistry, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh EH9 3FJ, UK
Institut für Geologische Wissenschaften, Freie Universität Berlin, 12249 Berlin, Germany
Lycée Colbert, BP 50620 59208 Tourcoing Cedex, France
Institute of Synthetic Microbiology, University of Düsseldorf, 40225 Düsseldorf, Germany
Quantitative and Theoretical Biology, University of Düsseldorf, 40225 Düsseldorf, Germany
School of Biological and Chemical Sciences, Queen Mary University of London, London E1 4DQ, UK
Université de Strasbourg, CNRS, ISIS, 8 allée Gaspard Monge, 67000 Strasbourg, France
Archaea Biology and Ecogenomics Division, University of Vienna, 1090 Vienna, Austria
Cellular and Molecular Biophysics, Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry, 82152 Martinsried, Germany
Department of Plant Systematics, Ecology and Theoretical Biology, Eötvös Loránd University, Pázmány Péter sétány 1/C, 1117 Budapest, Hungary
Institute of Evolution, MTA Centre for Ecological Research, Klebelsberg Kuno u. 3., H-8237 Tihany, Hungary
Department of Cellular, Computational and Integrative Biology (CIBIO), University of Trento, 38123 Trento, Italy
Systems Biophysics, Physics Department, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München, 80799 Munich, Germany
Cluster of Excellence on Plant Sciences (CEPLAS), University of Cologne, 50674 Cologne, Germany
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Life 2020, 10(3), 20;
Received: 31 January 2020 / Revised: 19 February 2020 / Accepted: 21 February 2020 / Published: 26 February 2020
(This article belongs to the Section Origin of Life)
Research on the origin of life is highly heterogeneous. After a peculiar historical development, it still includes strongly opposed views which potentially hinder progress. In the 1st Interdisciplinary Origin of Life Meeting, early-career researchers gathered to explore the commonalities between theories and approaches, critical divergence points, and expectations for the future. We find that even though classical approaches and theories—e.g., bottom-up and top-down, RNA world vs. metabolism-first—have been prevalent in origin of life research, they are ceasing to be mutually exclusive and they can and should feed integrating approaches. Here we focus on pressing questions and recent developments that bridge the classical disciplines and approaches, and highlight expectations for future endeavours in origin of life research. View Full-Text
Keywords: origins of life; prebiotic chemistry; early life; LUCA; abiogenesis; top-down; bottom-up; emergence origins of life; prebiotic chemistry; early life; LUCA; abiogenesis; top-down; bottom-up; emergence
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MDPI and ACS Style

Preiner, M.; Asche, S.; Becker, S.; Betts, H.C.; Boniface, A.; Camprubi, E.; Chandru, K.; Erastova, V.; Garg, S.G.; Khawaja, N.; Kostyrka, G.; Machné, R.; Moggioli, G.; Muchowska, K.B.; Neukirchen, S.; Peter, B.; Pichlhöfer, E.; Radványi, Á.; Rossetto, D.; Salditt, A.; Schmelling, N.M.; Sousa, F.L.; Tria, F.D.K.; Vörös, D.; Xavier, J.C. The Future of Origin of Life Research: Bridging Decades-Old Divisions. Life 2020, 10, 20.

AMA Style

Preiner M, Asche S, Becker S, Betts HC, Boniface A, Camprubi E, Chandru K, Erastova V, Garg SG, Khawaja N, Kostyrka G, Machné R, Moggioli G, Muchowska KB, Neukirchen S, Peter B, Pichlhöfer E, Radványi Á, Rossetto D, Salditt A, Schmelling NM, Sousa FL, Tria FDK, Vörös D, Xavier JC. The Future of Origin of Life Research: Bridging Decades-Old Divisions. Life. 2020; 10(3):20.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Preiner, Martina, Silke Asche, Sidney Becker, Holly C. Betts, Adrien Boniface, Eloi Camprubi, Kuhan Chandru, Valentina Erastova, Sriram G. Garg, Nozair Khawaja, Gladys Kostyrka, Rainer Machné, Giacomo Moggioli, Kamila B. Muchowska, Sinje Neukirchen, Benedikt Peter, Edith Pichlhöfer, Ádám Radványi, Daniele Rossetto, Annalena Salditt, Nicolas M. Schmelling, Filipa L. Sousa, Fernando D.K. Tria, Dániel Vörös, and Joana C. Xavier. 2020. "The Future of Origin of Life Research: Bridging Decades-Old Divisions" Life 10, no. 3: 20.

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