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Survival of Self-Replicating Molecules under Transient Compartmentalization with Natural Selection

1
UMR CNRS Gulliver 7083, ESPCI, 10 rue Vauquelin, CEDEX 05, 75231 Paris, France
2
Santa Marinella Research Institute, 00052 Santa Marinella, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 August 2019 / Revised: 23 September 2019 / Accepted: 27 September 2019 / Published: 3 October 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Origin of Life)
The problem of the emergence and survival of self-replicating molecules in origin-of-life scenarios is plagued by the error catastrophe, which is usually escaped by considering effects of compartmentalization, as in the stochastic corrector model. By addressing the problem in a simple system composed of a self-replicating molecule (a replicase) and a parasite molecule that needs the replicase for copying itself, we show that transient (rather than permanent) compartmentalization is sufficient to the task. We also exhibit a regime in which the concentrations of the two kinds of molecules undergo sustained oscillations. Our model should be relevant not only for origin-of-life scenarios but also for describing directed evolution experiments, which increasingly rely on transient compartmentalization with pooling and natural selection. View Full-Text
Keywords: origin of life; error catastrophe; parasites origin of life; error catastrophe; parasites
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Laurent, G.; Peliti, L.; Lacoste, D. Survival of Self-Replicating Molecules under Transient Compartmentalization with Natural Selection. Life 2019, 9, 78.

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