Icy Birth? Amino acids form in simulations of space ice | Science News


Science News is a nonprofit.

Help us keep you informed.


Icy Birth? Amino acids form in simulations of space ice

9:02am, March 27, 2002

In another step toward understanding the origin of Earth's biological molecules, two independent laboratory experiments have produced amino acids–the building blocks of proteins–by simulating conditions in icy, interstellar space.

The results, published in the March 28 Nature, suggest that some amino acids could have formed in giant clouds of icy particles and then hitched rides on comets and asteroids to planets throughout the universe, says Max Bernstein of NASA's Ames Research Center in Mountain View, Calif.

In the search for precursors to life on Earth, various researchers have created amino acids and other organic molecul

This article is only available to Science News subscribers. Already a subscriber? Log in now. Or subscribe today for full access.

Get Science News headlines by e-mail.

More from Science News

From the Nature Index Paid Content