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Prog Biophys Mol Biol. 2003 Apr;81(3):201-17.

Early assembly of cellular life.

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  • 1Laboratory of Microbial Technology, Department of Environmental Biology, University of Guelph, Guelph, Ont., Canada N1G 2W1.


Popular hypotheses that attempt to explain the origin of prebiotic molecules and cellular life capable of growth and division are not always agreed upon. In this manuscript, information on early bacterial life on Earth is examined using information from several disciplines. For example, knowledge can be integrated from physics, thermodynamics, planetary sciences, geology, biogeochemistry, lipid chemistry, primordial cell structures, cell and molecular biology, microbiology, metabolism and genetics. The origin of life also required a combination of elements, compounds and environmental physical-chemical conditions that allowed cells to assemble in less than a billion years. This may have been widespread in the subsurface of the early Earth located at microscopic physical domains.

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