Theoretical and Computer Modeling of Evolution of Autocatalytic Systems in a Flow Reactor
A chemoautotrophic concept of the initial stages of chemical prebiotic evolution, which eliminates key difficulties in the problem of life origin and permits experimental tests, is proposed. The concept leads to an important statement—organisms emerging (out of the Earth and/or inside an experimental reactor) have to be based on biochemical bases, different from those occurring on our planet. According to the concept the predecessor of living beings has to be sufficiently simple to provide non-zero probability of self-assembly during a short (in geological or cosmic scale) time. In addition the predecessor has to be capable of autocatalysis, and further complexification (i.e., evolution). A theoretical model of a multivariate oligomeric autocatalyst coupled with a phase-separated particle is presented. This model, possessing non-genomic inheritance, describes a version of the ‘metabolism first’ approach to life origin. Conducted computer simulation shows the origin of an autocatalytic oligomeric phase-separated system to be possible at reasonable values of the kinetic parameters of involved chemical reactions in a small-scale flow reactor.
KeywordsFlow Reactor Chemical Evolution Life Origin Linear Oligomer Autocatalytic System
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