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Investigating Prebiotic Protocells for a Comprehensive Understanding of the Origins of Life: A Prebiotic Systems Chemistry Perspective

1
Institut de Chimie et Biochimie Moléculaires et Supramoléculaires, Université de Lyon, Claude Bernard Lyon 1, 1 Rue Victor Grignard, Bâtiment Lederer, 69622 Villeurbanne CEDEX, France
2
Master de Biologie, École Normale Supérieure de Lyon, Université Claude Bernard Lyon I, Université de Lyon, 69342 Lyon CEDEX 07, France
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
To David Deamer, mentor and pioneer in the research on lipids in prebiotic and systems chemistry.
Received: 18 April 2019 / Revised: 21 May 2019 / Accepted: 6 June 2019 / Published: 7 June 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Themed Issue Commemorating Prof. David Deamer's 80th Birthday)
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Abstract

Protocells are supramolecular systems commonly used for numerous applications, such as the formation of self-evolvable systems, in systems chemistry and synthetic biology. Certain types of protocells imitate plausible prebiotic compartments, such as giant vesicles, that are formed with the hydration of thin films of amphiphiles. These constructs can be studied to address the emergence of life from a non-living chemical network. They are useful tools since they offer the possibility to understand the mechanisms underlying any living cellular system: Its formation, its metabolism, its replication and its evolution. Protocells allow the investigation of the synergies occurring in a web of chemical compounds. This cooperation can explain the transition between chemical (inanimate) and biological systems (living) due to the discoveries of emerging properties. The aim of this review is to provide an overview of relevant concept in prebiotic protocell research. View Full-Text
Keywords: protocell; compartment; prebiotic chemistry; systems chemistry; origin of life protocell; compartment; prebiotic chemistry; systems chemistry; origin of life
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Lopez, A.; Fiore, M. Investigating Prebiotic Protocells for a Comprehensive Understanding of the Origins of Life: A Prebiotic Systems Chemistry Perspective. Life 2019, 9, 49.

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