Science: A New View of Evolution

How did life begin on the primordial earth? Scientists looking for clues within the living cell have been stymied by a catch-22. All living organisms are composed largely of proteins, which consist of strings of amino acids manufactured within cells in small granules called ribosomes. But ribosomes are themselves highly complex protein structures that obviously evolved long after protein first appeared. Then how, without the complex ribosome "factories," was primitive protein produced? Last week, in a report published in the journal Origin of Life, a team of molecular biologists suggested an answer. If the hypothesis is correct, says one of the...

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