Some Like It Hot, But Not the First Biomolecules

Science  14 Jun 2002:
Vol. 296, Issue 5575, pp. 1982-1983
DOI: 10.1126/science.1069487

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According to the prebiotic soup theory, the first primitive life on Earth emerged when organic molecules formed macromolecules that evolved the ability to catalyze their own replication. The main rival theory contends that the first living system on Earth was a primitive metabolic life characterized by a series of self-sustaining reactions between simple monomers. In their Perspective, Bada and Lazcano argue that the two theories are not mutually exclusive and that cool temperatures would have been required in either case for modern life to evolve.