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Quote of the day

'By far the greatest danger of Artificial Intelligence is that people conclude too early that they understand it'

 

Eliezer Yudkowsky

Icy Cosmic Start for Amino Acids and DNA Ingredients

RATE THIS! +11
Posted in Science on 3rd Mar, 2013 01:19 AM by AlexMuller

Using new technology at the telescope and in laboratories, researchers have discovered an important pair of prebiotic molecules in interstellar space. The discoveries indicate that some basic chemicals that are key steps on the way to life may have formed on dusty ice grains floating between the stars.

 

The scientists used the National Science Foundation's Green Bank Telescope (GBT) in West Virginia to study a giant cloud of gas some 25,000 light-years from Earth, near the center of our Milky Way Galaxy. The chemicals they found in that cloud include a molecule thought to be a precursor to a key component of DNA and another that may have a role in the formation of the amino acid alanine.

 

One of the newly-discovered molecules, called cyanomethanimine, is one step in the process that chemists believe produces adenine, one of the four nucleobases that form the "rungs" in the ladder-like structure of DNA. The other molecule, called ethanamine, is thought to play a role in forming alanine, one of the twenty amino acids in the genetic code.



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Comments

Author: Guest
Posted: 2013-03-03
+7
While this is indeed interesting, I have to admit I don't understand a lot of the meaning behind it. There are DNA and Alanine on dusty rock particles 25,000 light years away! And this concerns me how? Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2013-03-03
+7
Yes, Yes, I know! This all contributes to the general knowledge of something or other. I just have trouble placing it in my reading materials library! LOL In other words, Whooosh! Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2013-03-03
+7
If I was maybe twenty something instead of an infirm sixty something, I think I would enjoy going back to school to learn about a lot of these things that currently go right over my head! LOL LOL Reply


 

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