The Relativity of Code, Energy, and Mass: The Molecular Mechanism of Autonomy and Self-Organization in Biological System

  • Tara Karimi


Biomolecules are the principal building blocks from which a cell is constructed. A large number of functional biomolecules, exciting in the cells, are in the form of polymeric macromolecules composed of sequences of various monomeric subunits. Still, biomolecules have remarkable properties that make the chemistry of living systems special compared to other non-living chemical elements in nature. A special property of biomolecules is related to the information storage and transduction via the electrochemical interactions among their atoms.

This causes the multifunctional property of materials (matter) in living cells, as units of energy, mass, and information storage/transfer at the same time. This multifunctional property of matter in living cells can be observed at different scales, starting from subatomic level (quantum) to molecular, micro, and macro levels of complexity.

In fact, the high efficiency and autonomous nature of biological processes in information operation as well as, energy and mass transfer are directly related to the multifunctional property of biomolecules (biomatter). In previous chapters, we discussed each of these features of autonomy in living systems, including self-regulation, self-organization, and self-fueling properties, separately.

In this chapter, we attempted to describe the integrity among molecular mechanism of endogenous information processing, self-fueling, and self-organization.

Biomolecules are able to shift among their functions (as units of information storage energy, and mass) production freely based on the dynamic needs of a living system in interaction with its environmental factors.

In this chapter by referring to their highly flexible chemical structure, we attempted to describe the multifunctional properties of biomolecules. To this end, we discussed the integrity of metabolic pathways among three major categories of biomolecules, including nucleic acids, carbohydrates, and amino acids.

Multifunctional property of biomolecules (as units of information, energy, and mass), as well as their structural flexibility (through the integrity of metabolic pathways), also called the relativity of code, energy, and mass, describes several features of autonomy in biological systems.

By inspiring from biological systems, relativity of code, energy, and mass in biomolecules can be applied in the future as an efficient solution for designing and generation of synthetic autonomous system as well as a sustainable solution for production of smart and programable materials.


Autonomy Programmable materials Biomolecules Information-enriched macromolecules Quantum mechanics Relativity of code Energy and mass 


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tara Karimi
    • 1
  1. 1.Tulane Medical CenterTulane UniversityNew OrleansUSA

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