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   Creationism vs Evolution Debates
     New advance in abiogenesis?
       he article seems to indicate it

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Nature article
Anyone else read this?  Seems like a pretty big step to me.  We now have chemical reactions that don't reach equilibrium, structures similar to cell membranes, and a form of reproduction.  


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"The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not "Eureka!" (I found it) but 'That's funny...'"
- Isaac Asimov
 


Posts: 234 | Posted: 1:33 PM on April 29, 2004 | IP
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It's kinda neat, but I don't know if I'd call it a big step.  After all, the demonstration that something can happed is no indication that it did.  Also, their cocktail is pretty specialized.  I don't think there's ever been significant amounts of hydrogen peroxide floating around, has there?  Still, it is neat, and if it opens up new lines of research, than cool.  
 


Posts: 92 | Posted: 3:58 PM on April 29, 2004 | IP
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In Musgrave posted this on talk.origins:

I reproduced the experiment, with the following caveats. I used
potassium iodide rather than sodium, and I didn't have a pellet press
(a pharmacology department without a pellet press!!!) so I used
calcium and copper chloride pressed into a shallow plastic cup to
prevent the calcium/copper salts from just dissolving straight away.

It worked, more or less. Almost as soon as I put the cup on the bottom
of the beaker, strange tentacular funnels began to grow and pump
iodine out, I also got the more mushroom-like structures as well, but
the tentacles were amazing. The tentacles were brown, and looked like
a field of anemones. Unfortunately the oxygen produced in the reaction
made the cup float, and when it did that the tentacles broke off. The
broken off pieces continued to grow and even "bud", as was reported.
Unfortunately, due to the repeated rising and sinking the really
pretty fungoid structures didn't last very long.

So I have to find a pellet press, and do the whole thing again, this
time with rapid recording. I'm also trying to find a heavy cup that
won't float, to record the tentacles.

Cheers! Ian

Now, I'm not big on chemistry, but it seems that it doesn't have to be specialized


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"The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not "Eureka!" (I found it) but 'That's funny...'"
- Isaac Asimov
 


Posts: 234 | Posted: 4:16 PM on April 29, 2004 | IP
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I'm at least medium on chemistry.  Sodium and potassium are very similar chemically, so being able to swap them is no big surprise.  As for the rest though...

Most, if not all, of the salts are very soluable in water, so you're unlikely to find them in solid form, at least not in any quantity.  And hydrogen peroxide is pretty unstable, being especially suseptible to uv rays.  (that's why the bottles in the drug stores are opaque)  

So, the odds of this specific reaction occurring outside the lab are really close to nil.  However, now that we've seen that this sort of thing can happen, we can try to reproduce it with things that could have been around in the early days.  That's the experiment I want to see.
 


Posts: 92 | Posted: 5:31 PM on April 29, 2004 | IP
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yeah, exactly.  It's a step in the right direction, and it shows it is possible.  


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"The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not "Eureka!" (I found it) but 'That's funny...'"
- Isaac Asimov
 


Posts: 234 | Posted: 5:50 PM on April 29, 2004 | IP
    
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