The Origin of Life on the Earth - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9781483197371, 9781483222400

The Origin of Life on the Earth

1st Edition

Held at Moscow, 19-24 August 1957

Editors: A. I. Oparin A. E. Braunshteĭn A. G. Pasynskiĭ
eBook ISBN: 9781483222400
Imprint: Pergamon
Published Date: 1st January 1959
Page Count: 708
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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


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


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© Pergamon 1959
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About the Editor

A. I. Oparin

A. E. Braunshteĭn

A. G. Pasynskiĭ

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