- Scientists used a computer program to uncover more than 1 million molecules that could potentially store genetic information, just like DNA
- "It is truly exciting to consider the potential for alternate genetic systems ... that these might possibly have emerged and evolved in different environments, perhaps even on other planets or moons within our solar system," co-author Jay Goodwin, a chemist at Emory University, said in a statement.
- The multitude of look-alikes may clarify the story of how life on Earth came to be, before DNA and RNA dominated the world of biology. Theoretically, evolution may have performed "test runs" with some of these other molecules before settling on nucleic acids as the best conveyors of genetic data, the authors suggested.
The study being reported on:
J. Chem. Inf. Model. 2019, 59, 10, 4266-4277 https://doi.org/10.1021/acs.jcim.9b00632
Henderson James Cleaves II*Christopher ButchPieter Buys BurgerJay GoodwinMarkus Meringer
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