The Origin of Life on the Earth

The Origin of Life on the Earth

Held at Moscow, 19-24 August 1957

1st Edition - January 1, 1959

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  • Editors: A. I. Oparin, A. E. Braunshteĭn, A. G. Pasynskiĭ
  • eBook ISBN: 9781483222400

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The Origin of Life on the Earth covers the proceedings of the First International Symposium of The Origin of Life on the Earth, held at Moscow on August 19-24, 1957. This symposium brings together numerous scientific studies on the evolutionary principles and the different stages in the evolutionary development of matter. This book is organized into seven parts encompassing 60 chapters. The first parts discuss evidence that on the formation of hydrocarbons and their derivatives on the surface of the Earth even before the emergence of life. The subsequent parts are devoted to the many asymmetrical syntheses under the influence of circularly-polarized ultraviolet light, by catalytic reactions occurring on the surface of quartz crystals, and spontaneously by slow crystallization from solutions. These topics are followed by reviews on the possible means of abiogenic formation of amino acids, porphyrins, protein-like polymers, polynucleotides and other high-molecular organic compounds. Considerable chapters explore the complete possibility of the primary formation of these compounds on the surface of the Earth even before life was present on it. Other general topics covered include nucleic acids, nucleoproteins and viruses. The last part considers general biochemical problems connected with the further development of metabolism. This book will be of value to astronomers, physicists, geologists, chemists, and biologists.

Table of Contents

  • Foreword

    Introductory Note from the International Union of Biochemistry

    Editors' Preface

    Introductory Address

    Discours d'ouverture

    First Session Primary Formation of Primitive Organic Compounds on the Earth


    Some Considerations about the Primeval State of the Earth

    Primitive Planetary Atmospheres and the Origin of Life

    The Origin of the Biosphere

    The Problem of Stages in Biopoesis


    The Evolution of the Atmosphere of the Earth

    The Formation of the Earth at Cold Material and the Problem of the Formation of the Simplest Organic Substances

    Chemical Diversity and the Origins of Life

    The Geological Conditions for the Appearance of Life on the Earth and the Problems of Petroleum Genesis

    The Role of Dissymmetry in the Origin of Living Material


    Second Session the Transformation of Primary Organic Compounds on the Earth


    Formation of Organic Compounds on the Primitive Earth

    Photosynthesis in the Shortest Ultraviolet


    The Reactions Involved in the Formation of Compounds Preliminary to the Synthesis of Protoplasm and Other Materials of Biological Importance

    The Original Formation of Amino Acids under the Action of Ultraviolet Rays and Electric Discharges

    Absolute Asymmetric Synthesis and Asymmetric Catalysis

    Some Conditions for the Appearance of Life on the Earth


    Third Session the Origin of Proteins, Nucleoproteins and Enzymes


    On the Origin of the Fore-Protein

    Der Ursprung der Enzyme

    Evolution of Enzymes and the Photosynthetic Apparatus

    The Nature of the Forces Operating in the Process of the Duplication of Molecules in Living Organisms


    The Occurrence of Amino Acids in Nature

    Ähnlichkeit der Struktur bei Eiweißstoffen

    Die Kontinuität des Eiweisses

    A Chemical Theory of Spontaneous Generation

    Complex Compounds and Models of Enzymes

    Experimental Demonstration of the Occurrence of Metabolic Processes in Simple Proteins

    The Problem of the Origin of the Proteins


    Fourth Session the Origin of Proteins, Nucleoproteins and Enzymes


    Nucleic Acids as Carriers of Biological Information

    The Infective Nucleic Acid at Tobacco Mosaic Virus

    Die Bedeutung der Virusforschung für die Erkenntnis biologischer Vermehrungsvorgänge

    On the Nature of Viruses, Genes and Life


    On the Species Specificity of the Nucleic Acids in Bacteria

    Die Spezifizität der Desoxyribonukleinsäure

    Die Entstehung des dynamischen Zustandes

    Synthèse enzymatique des ribopolynucléotides

    A Note on the Evolution of Nucleic Acids

    Les acides nucléiques et l'origine des protéines


    Fifth Session the Origin of Structure and Metabolism


    The Scale of Structural Units in Biopoesis

    The Part Played by Structural Elements in the Biochemical Function of Cells

    Problèmes d'évolution dans la thermodynamique des phénomènes irreversibles


    Biochemical Processes in the Simplest Structures

    The Origin of Life and the Formation and Organizing Functions of Natural Membranes

    Enzymic Reactions in Stationary Open Systems

    Biosynthesis of Enzymes and Their Origin

    Cell Structure and Protein Synthesis

    Some Relationships between Coacervates and Enzymes

    Protein Complexes as Biochemically Active Systems


    Sixth Session the Evolution of Metabolism


    L'extension de la biosphère et l'évolution biochimique

    Ãœber einige wahrscheinliche Wege der Evolution des Stoffwechsels bei den Mikroorganismen

    The Pathways of Biological Assimilation and Dissimilation of Nitrogen and Some Aspects of Their Evolution


    Le rôle de l'ammoniaque dans l'assimilation autotrophe de l'azote

    Meaning of Nitrate and Sulphate Reduction in the Process of Metabolic Evolution

    The Comparative Characters of the Oxidative Systems of Various Groups of Organisms in Relation to Their Evolution

    The Effect of Cysteine on the Methionine Content of the Animal and Plant Organism


    Seventh Session the Evolution of Metabolism


    Au sujet du passage de la vie anaérobie a la vie aérobie

    Significance of Molecular Hydrogen Metabolism in the Transitionary Stage at Anerobiosis to Aerobiosis

    Development of the Mode of Action of the Photocataly Tic System in Organisms


    The Relation between Primitive and Present-Day Photobiological Processes

    The Evolution of Chemosynthesis

    Entstehung und Evolution der phototrophen Ernährungsweise

    Die Grundetappen der Biogenese des Chlorophylls

    Thermal Factors in Archeometabolism

    Final General Discussion

    Author Index

    Subject Index

Product details

  • No. of pages: 708
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Pergamon 1959
  • Published: January 1, 1959
  • Imprint: Pergamon
  • eBook ISBN: 9781483222400

About the Editors

A. I. Oparin

A. E. Braunshteĭn

A. G. Pasynskiĭ

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