The First Cell pp 173-178 | Cite as

After LUCA: What Happened Next?

  • Ulrich C. Schreiber
  • Christian Mayer


After rising to the earth’s surface, the continued development of the first cells most likely took place in the vicinity of “black smokers” in the oceans. The flooding after meteor strikes also means that they could also have spread over the first continents. Here, independent strains of bacteria were able to develop which had no contact with other continents. With the onset of plate tectonics, a meeting of the various tribes came about following the collisions between continents which may have resulted in the endosymbiotic transfer of genes. The crust model presented also provides us with the chance to think about the role played by viruses entering into everyday life. One possibility is the parallel development of two similar RNA types, one of which remains inside the cells and one in the free environment inside the cavities.


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© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ulrich C. Schreiber
    • 1
  • Christian Mayer
    • 2
  1. 1.Faculty for BiologyUniversity of Duisburg-EssenEssenGermany
  2. 2.Faculty for ChemistryUniversity of Duisburg-EssenEssenGermany

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