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PostPosted: Tue Apr 14, 2009 9:59 pm 
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Someone found some similar element between alien and human DNA...

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Why ET's genetic code could be just like ours.
A new thermodynamic analysis suggests that 10 of life's 20 amino acids must be common throughout the cosmos.

One of the great outstanding questions in biology involves the evolution of the genetic code and the fact it relies on 20 amino acids. How did this system evolve and why use 20 amino acids and not some other number? Today, Paul Higgs and Ralph Pudritz at McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada, put forward an answer which has profound implications for the nature of life on other planets.

We know that amino acids are common in our solar system and beyond. Various first experiments to recreate the conditions in the Earth's early atmosphere have produced 10 of the amino acids found in proteins. Curiously, analyses of meteorite samples have found exactly these same 10 amino acids. Various researchers have noted this link but none have explained it.

Now we know why, say Higgs and Pudritz. They have ranked the amino acids found in proteins according to the thermodynamic likelihood of them forming. This turns out to match the observed abundances in meteorites and in early Earth simulations, more or less exactly.

That's a neat piece of work. They go on to argue that the first genetic codes must have evolved to exploit these 10 prebiotic amino acids. The other amino acids which are all bigger and generally more difficult to synthesise must have been incorporated later. At any rate, Nature had settled on the full 20 we see today by the time the earliest common ancestor of all organisms on the planet first emerged, at least 3.5 billion years ago.

Higgs and Pudritz are not the first to suggest that the first genetic code consisted of 10 prebiotic amino acids but all previous arguments have differed in various ways. What's impressive about their argument is that it is underpinned by the powerful theoretical machinery of thermodynamics.

The implications of this are huge. Thermodynamic arguments are as valid on Earth as they are in interstellar gas clouds, where evidence of amino acids has already been seen. What's the betting that these amino acids are the same as the prebiotic 10 that Higgs and Pudritz finger?

These same thermodynamic arguments should also hold on Earth-like planets elsewhere in the cosmos. And if that's the case, then ET may not be so alien after all, as Higgs and Pudritz imply with the extraordinary conclusion to their paper:

"The combined actions of thermodynamics and subsequent natural selection suggest that the genetic code we observe on the Earth today may have significant features in common with life throughout the cosmos."

Wow!

Ref: arxiv.org/abs/0904.0402: A thermodynamic Basis for Prebiotic Amino Acid Synthesis and the Nature of the First Genetic Code


http://www.technologyreview.com/blog/arxiv/23309/

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 6:11 am 
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That is a very, very interesting article. I didn't know about the 20 amnio acids being common in even meteorites, let alone throughout the cosmos. We are no so unique are we.

Great article dad.

Great university too, I've taken courses through McMaster. ;)

Tim

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 6:15 am 
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Of course this makes perfect sense, why would it be any different than it is?

A tree will be a tree regardless of its species and regardless of the planet it calls home.

It is my opinion that trees of one kind or another will be found on any number of planets throughout the universe, simply because a tree, any tree, is based on the same basic principles which affect all physical structure.

It doesn't get much more straightforward than that.

So why would it be any different for creatures such as we humans.....we should expect others in other parts of the universe to be somewhat similar to ourselves, in relation to our basic structure.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 10:23 am 
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They can also forms of energy, but at same time they will be always similar to the human (bettere say the human similar to them...). It's like the sea: many fishes, races, but in end they have a point similar between of of them. This Universe is a big unknown sea...but the base is the same for all, also where there are different seasons or kind of life.

The "primordial soup" is the same, 'cause all are in the same "container". They could be a form of energy, but something will be similar to the human too...

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 20, 2009 10:01 pm 
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david barclay wrote:
Of course this makes perfect sense, why would it be any different than it is?

A tree will be a tree regardless of its species and regardless of the planet it calls home.

It is my opinion that trees of one kind or another will be found on any number of planets throughout the universe, simply because a tree, any tree, is based on the same basic principles which affect all physical structure.

It doesn't get much more straightforward than that.

So why would it be any different for creatures such as we humans.....we should expect others in other parts of the universe to be somewhat similar to ourselves, in relation to our basic structure.


like i have mentioned before... evolution goes the simpliest way that is possible...
that puts limit on everything... that is also the reason
on why intelligent beings as humanoid... why some look like humans... and why even on our planet we have lot of similar looking yet totally unrelated people...
etc
dont expect to see saucer land in the middle of (put your city name here) and a bunch of intelligent pink elephants to come out :)

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 12:13 am 
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No, no, last time was a normal elephant with pink painted nails :mrgreen:

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 2:45 am 
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nailpinks or so they call themselfs is only an exception that confirms the rule :mrgreen:

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 12:25 am 
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Oh, and it was not a saucer... but a circus :mrgreen:

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