Back
 ABC  Vol.7 No.5 , October 2017
Re-Thinking Biology—I. Maxwell’s Demon and the Spontaneous Origin of Life
Abstract: A hypothesis is advanced in which life began from a Darwinian selection among a diversification of molecular species containing the phosphate moiety which broke the constraints implicit in the Second Law of Thermodynamics, discussed famously by Schrodinger, by obtaining energy from specific infrared frequencies located in the phosphorus-oxygen vibration at a frequency around 1000 cm-1. We propose the source of this energy was from the internal conversion of solar broadband energy by the phosphate mineral Apatite, present at the bottom of a primitive biogenesis pond. In this scenario, life is re-defined as being hotter than its environment and as using its excess energy, supplied by infra-red conversion, to react with its molecular environment and pump itself up the “entropy slope” thereby; replication is through breakages of increasingly large phosphate containing biopolymers. The idea has implications for modern explanations of living systems.
Cite this paper: Busby, C. and Howard, C. (2017) Re-Thinking Biology—I. Maxwell’s Demon and the Spontaneous Origin of Life. Advances in Biological Chemistry, 7, 170-181. doi: 10.4236/abc.2017.75012.
References

[1]   Lahav, N. (1999) Biogenesis: Theories of Life’s Origins. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

[2]   Haldane, J.B.S. (1929) The Origin of Life. The Rationalist Annual, 3, 3-10.

[3]   Joyce, G.F. (2009) Evolution in an RNA world. Cold Spring Harbour Perspectives in Biology. Cold Spring Harbour Laboratory Press, Cold Spring Harbour New York, 74 (Evolution: The Molecular Landscape), 17-23.
https://doi.org/10.1101/sqb.2009.74.004

[4]   Martin, W., Baross, J., Kelley, D. and Russell, J. (2008) Hydrothermal Vents and the Origin of Life. Nature Reviews: Microbiology, 6, 805-814.
https://doi.org/10.1038/nrmicro1991

[5]   Günter Wachtershauser, G. (1992) Groundworks for an Evolutionary Biochemistry: The Iron-Sulphur World. Progress in Biophysics and Molecular Biology, 58, 85-201.
https://doi.org/10.1016/0079-6107(92)90022-X

[6]   Mulkidjanian Armen, Y. (2009) On the Origin of Life in the Zinc World: 1. Photosynthesizing, Porous Edifices Built of Hydrothermally Precipitated Zinc Sulfide as Cradles of Life on Earth. Biology Direct, 4, 26.
https://doi.org/10.1186/1745-6150-4-26

[7]   Cairns-Smith, A.G. (1990) Seven Clues to the Origin of Life. UP, Cambridge.

[8]   Gold, T. (1992) The Deep Hot Biosphere. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 89, 6045-6049.
https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.89.13.6045

[9]   Adam, Z. (2007) Actinides and Life’ s Origins. Astrobiology, 7, 852-872.
https://doi.org/10.1089/ast.2006.0066

[10]   Segre, D., Ben-Eli, D., Deamer, D.W. and Lancet, D. (2001) Origins of Life and Evolution in the Biosphere. Kluwer Academic, Amsterdam.

[11]   Schrodinger, E. (1944) What Is Life? Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

[12]   Moore, A. (2012) Life Defined. Bioessays, 34, 253-254.
https://doi.org/10.1002/bies.201290011

[13]   Pross, A. (2012) What Is Life? How Chemistry Becomes Biology. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

[14]   Adams, D. (1979) The Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy. Gollancz, London.

[15]   Turing, A.M. (1952) The Chemical Basis of Morphogenesis. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, 237, 37-72.
https://doi.org/10.1098/rstb.1952.0012

[16]   Michaelian, K. (2016) Thermodynamic Dissipation Theory of the Origin and Evolution of Life: Salient Characteristics of RNA and DNA and Other Fundamental Molecules Suggest an Origin of Life Driven by UV-C Light, Self-Published. CreateSpace, Mexico City.

[17]   Connors, J.A. (1990) Chemical Kinetics. Wiley, New York.

[18]   Nakamoto, K. (2008) The Infrared and Raman Spectra of Inorganic and Coordination Compounds. 5th Edition, Wiley, New York.

[19]   Lalla, E.A., Lopez-Reyes, G., Sansano, A., Sanz-Arranz, A., Martinez-Frias, J., Medina, J. and Rull-Perez, F. (2016) Raman IR Vibrational and XRD Chacterization of Ancient and Modern Mineralogy from Volcanic Eruption in Tenerife Island: Implication for Mars. Geoscience Frontiers, 7, 673-681.

[20]   Emsley, J. and Hall, D. (1976) The Chemistry of Phosphorus. Environmental, Organic, Inorganic, Biochemical and Spectroscopic Aspects. Harper and Row, London.

[21]   Thomas, L.C. (1974) The Interpretation of the Infrared Spectra of Phosphorus Compounds. Heyden and Co., London.

[22]   Hazen, R.M. and Sverjensky, D.A. (2010) Mineral Surfaces, Geocemical Complexities and the Origin of Life. Cold Spring Harbour Perspectives in Biology, 2, a002162.

[23]   Fox, S.W. (1965) The Origins of Prebiological Systems and of Their Molecular Matrices. Academic Press, New York.

[24]   Busby, C. (2016) What Is Life? On the Origin and Mechanism of Living Systems. QTP Publications, Coleraine.

 
 
Top