We are nearing a half-century since Eigen wrote about this paradox, and it “still challenges theoretical biologists.”
Leading lights in origin-of-life research share their work and thoughts in a series of open-access articles about chemical evolution.
Scientists were dumbfounded to find shellfish looking at them with hundreds of elegantly designed eyes.
In Part 1 I discussed the eminent and late origin of life theorist Leslie Orgel’s criticisms of theories that self-sustaining metabolic pathways could spontaneously come into existence on the early earth and evolve into life. Orgel’s was skeptical that this could occur because “the chance of a full set of such catalysts occurring at a single locality on the primitive Earth in the absence of catalysts for disruptive side reactions seems remote in the extreme.” Indeed, according to Orgel, the type of complexity we normally find in the metabolic pathways of life require “a skilled synthetic chemist.” But what if we assume that such pathways could come into existence? Even if such pathways existed, they would still be far from Read More ›