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Life Sciences - Evolutionary & Developmental Biology | Genesis - In The Beginning - Precursors of Life, Chemical Models and Early Biological Evolution

Genesis - In The Beginning

Precursors of Life, Chemical Models and Early Biological Evolution

Seckbach, Joseph (Ed.)

2012, XXXIX, 934p. 268 illus., 99 illus. in color.

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  • Genesis and evolution of Life with chemical, geological and biological data in one volume
  • The book covers several aspects of Life on Earth and on Solar system and beyond
  • The authors are competent and experts in their fields and present updated data from their research

This book deals with the Origin of Life on Earth and planets, which is currently a very “hot” topic dealt with at several international meetings, conferences and workshops by various societies and groups. The current volume is number 22 of the “Cellular Origin, Life in Extreme Habitats and Astrobiology” series (COLE) published by Springer. The contributors review new data in this field, following current studies from gene and molecular to macro levels. The extremophiles – microorganisms living at the edge of Life under very severe conditions (from our anthropocentric view point) - may point out possibilities of existing Life forms on other planets and satellites.  

In eight sections and fifty chapters, the seventy-five authors cover subjects such as chemical evolution, the function of geophysics in Life’s origin, the first steps of cellular evolution, Panspermia (the theory claiming that the source of Life is not from Earth but from Outer Space), possibility of extraterrestrial Life (Astrobiology), and the history of origin of Life on Earth and beyond.  

This up-to-date book complements volume 6 (Origin Genesis, Evolution and Diversity of Life (2004) in the COLE series (ISBN: 978-1-4020-1813-8) published by Kluwer Academic Publishers.  

Professor D. Deamer ends his Introduction with these words: Future progress in understanding the origin of life will involve simulations of prebiotic conditions that take this complexity into account. Some of the chapters in this book focus on specific aspects of the chemical and physical processes that would be involved in life's origins, while others incorporate increments in complexity such as mineral surfaces and compartments. In a sense, each chapter represents a piece of a puzzle, and readers who take the time to read all the chapters may see unexpected patterns emerge that will give clues to solving the puzzle. 

The primary audience for this book are general biologists, geologists, geneticists, astrobiologists and astrophysicists, and advance undergraduate and graduate students, researchers and teachers in those fields.

Content Level » Upper undergraduate

Keywords » Astrobiology - Cellular Evolution - History of Life beginning - Origins - Panspermia

Related subjects » Cell Biology - Earth System Sciences - Evolutionary & Developmental Biology - Geochemistry

Table of contents 

PRELIMINARY SECTION
Pathways to “Genesis - In the Beginning: Precursors of Life, Chemical Models and Early Biological Evolution”; Joseph Seckbach
Introduction to Genesis - In  The Beginning; David W. Deamer
Foreword; Steven A. Benner
Origins of Life - Keeping Options Open; Alan W. Schwartz
PART 1. CHEMICAL EVOLUTION
The Prebiotic Chemistry of Alternative Nucleic Acids; H. James Cleaves II, Jeffrey Bada
Cooptive Evolution of Prebiotic Chemical Networks; Chrisantha Fernando, Vera Vasas
Origin and Evolution of Self-Replicating Polymers on Mineral Habitats;  Enzo Gallori, Sergio Branciamore
Mathematical Models of Prebiotic Replication: A Primer for Experimentalists; Kelly Harris, Irene A. Chen
Life without Carbon; Rob Hengeveld
[GADV]-Protein World Hypothesis on the Origin of Life; Kenji Ikehara
Reality of the Emergence of Life-Like Systems from Simple Prebiotic Polymers on Primitive Earth; Kunio Kawamura
The Photobiological Regime in the Very Early Earth and the Emergence of Life; Osmel Martin, Rolando Cardenas, Liuba Peñate, J.E. Horvath
Prebiotic Formation of Peptides: A Markov Chain Approach; F.G Mosqueira, A. Negrón-Mendoza, S. Ramos-Bernal, C. Polanco
Atomic Structural Templates of the Earliest Life on Earth: Vibration and Lightning Experiments with Quartz and Amino Acids; M Pawlikowski
Chemical Evolution in Open Space: A Link to the Origin of ; Michael Simakov
The Prebiotic Chemistry of Nitrogen and the Origin of Life; David Summers
PART 2. THE ROLE OF PHYSICS AND GEOPHYSICS IN THE ORIGIN AND EVOLUTION OF LIFE
Moving ‘Far from Equilibrium’ in a Prebiotic Environment: The Role of Maxwell’s Demon in Life Origin; David L. Abel
Life from Interface; Katsuhiko Ariga,; Gary J. Richards, and Jonathan P.Hill
Breaking the Paradigm: The Pattern of Life; Tom Barbalet
Cyberbiogenesis and the EvoGrid: a 21st Century Grand Challenge; Bruce Damer, Peter Newman, Ryan Norkus, Richard Gordon and Tom Barbalet
Constructive Approaches for the Origin of Life; Norikazu Ichihashi, Tomoaki Matsuura, Hiroshi Kita; Takeshi Sunami, Hiroaki Suzuki, and Tetsuya Yomo
Origin of Life by Thermodynamic Inversion: A Universal Process; Vladimir Kompanichenko
Life Explained by Heat Engines; Anthonie W.J. Muller
Computational Simulations of Prebiotic Processes; Albert Rimola, Mariona Sodupe and Piero Ugliengo
The Cometary Hydrosphere; Robert B.Sheldon
In Situ, High Spatial Resolution Techniques in the Search for the Origin of Life; David Wacey
PART 3. THE ROLE OF SYMMETRY, INFORMATION AND ORDER IN THE ORIGIN OF LIFE
Disorder to Order, Non-Life to Life. In the Beginning There Was a Mistake; Ernesto Di Mauro, Keith A. Dunker and Eward N. Trifonov
The Role of Information and Order in the Origin of Life; B. Roy Frieden and Robert A. Gatenby
The Origin of First Peptides on Earth – From Amino Acids to Homochiral Biomolecules; Thomas Jakschitz, Daniel Fitz and Bernd Michael Rode
Chemical Models for the Origin of Biological Homochirality; Martin Klußmann
Absolute Asymmetric Reactions and the Origin of Biological Chirality; Gábor Lente
Energy-Driven Evolution of Prebiotic Chiral Order (Lessons from Dynamic Systems Modelling); Radu Pop and Vily M. Cimpoiasu
PART 4. PANSPERMIA
Recurrent Dreams of Life in Meteorites; Richard Gordon and Jesse McNichol
Are We from Outer Space? A Critical Review of the Panspermia Hypothesis; Jesse McNichol and Richard Gordon
Origin of Life and Panspermia; Chandra Wickramasinghe
PART 5. THE FIRST STEPS OF CELLULAR EVOLUTION
The Dimeric Proto-Ribosome Within the Modern Ribosome; Ilana Agmon
Oceanic Arginine Translator: The Origin of Life and Early Evolution of the Genetic Code; Robert W.Griffith
Tidal Cycling and the Origin of the Genetic Code: Implications for Cellular Life; Richard Lathe
Heterotrophic Model  Protocells; Sheref S. Mansy and Cristina Del Bianco
A Symbiogenic Way in the Origin of Life; Luisa Pereira, Telma Rodrigues and Francisco Carrapiço
Horizontal Gene Transfer and the Tree of Life; Jan Sapp
On the Vesicular Origin of the Cell Cycle; Saša Svetina
Hypothesized Micro-Environments for the Origin of Microbial Life on Earth; Jack T. Trevors, Asim K. Bej and Jan Dirk van Elsas
PART 6. THE DISTRIBUTION OF LIFE IN THE SOLAR SYSTEM AND ELSEWHERE IN THE COSMOS
What can Life on Earth Tell Us about Life in the Universe? Charles H. Lineweaver and Aditya Chopra
Potential for Life in the Saturn System; Francois Raulin
Energy Sources for, and Detectability of, Life on Extrasolar Planets; John A. Raven, Charles S. Cockell and Lisa Kaltenegger
Environments Habitable by Extremophiles on Earth, the Solar System and Elsewhere; Joseph Seckbach and Julian Chela-Flores
PART 7. HISTORY AND FRONTIERS OF ASTROBIOLOGY AND THE HUMANITIES
Cultural Implications of the Search and Eventual Discovery of a Second Genesis; Roberto Artxaga Burgos and Julian Chela-Flores
The Concept of Chemical Evolution before Oparin; Florence Raulin Cerceau
A History of Origin of Life Ideas from Darwin to NASA; James E.Strick

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