quote:From the article Going back to our primitive ocean of 1 x 1024 litres and assuming a nucleotide concentration of 1 x 10-7 M , then there are roughly 1 x 1049 potential nucleotide chains, so that a fair number of efficent RNA ligases (about 1 x 1034) could be produced in a year, let alone a million years.
I haven't had a chance to get Chyba & Sagan's Nature article, so I may be way out of line here. But what evidence is there that such a concentration of amino acids existed?
The "probabilities" article makes some very big assumptions: 1) A significant simple chemical concentration and/or number of reaction sites 2) Optimal conditions at the sites for polymer formation against "adverse" heat, acidity/alkalinity & other chemicals present, turbulence 3) All simple chemicals are reacting 4) All polymers survive for further reactions 5) See 1-4 for polymers into replicating polymers 6) See 1-4 for replicating polymers into hypercycle
As I understand it the hypercycle would be an enclosed system in which further reactions are free to take place under fairly uniform conditions. Prior to the hypercycle formation, there is the possibility of FeS membranes (Russell & Hall), which would improve some of the simple chemical/polymer reactions. Maybe I am being somewhat naive here and would appreciate someone to point me in the right direction for info.
[This message has been edited by Omega Red, 09-24-2003]