Amino Acids and the Asymmetry of Life (häftad)
Häftad (Paperback / softback)
Antal sidor
Softcover reprint of hardcover 1st ed. 2008
Springer-Verlag Berlin and Heidelberg GmbH & Co. K
Kagan, Henri B. (foreword)
9 Tables, black and white; 12 Illustrations, color; 115 Illustrations, black and white; XXII, 242 p.
156 x 234 x 14 mm
372 g
Antal komponenter
1 Paperback / softback
Amino Acids and the Asymmetry of Life (häftad)

Amino Acids and the Asymmetry of Life

Caught in the Act of Formation

Häftad Engelska, 2010-11-19
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"How did life originate and why were left-handed molecules selected for its architecture?" This question of high public and interdisciplinary scientific interest is the central theme of this book. It is widely known that in processes triggering the origin of life on Earth, the equal occurrence, the parity between left-handed amino acids and their right-handed mirror images, was violated. The balance was inevitably tipped to the left - as a result of which life's proteins today exclusively implement the left form of amino acids. Written in an engaging style, this book describes how the basic building blocks of life, the amino acids, formed. After a comprehensible introduction to stereochemistry, the author addresses the inherent property of amino acids in living organisms, namely the preference for left-handedness. What was the cause for the violation of parity of amino acids in the emergence of life on Earth? All the fascinating models proposed by physicists, chemists and biologist are vividly presented including the scientific conflicts. The author describes the attempt to verify any of those models with the chirality module of the ROSETTA mission, a probe built and launched with the mission to land on a comet and analyse whether there are chiral organic compounds that could have been brought to the Earth by cometary impacts. A truly interdisciplinary astrobiology book, "Amino Acids and the Asymmetry of Life" will fascinate students, researchers and all readers with backgrounds in natural sciences. With a foreword by Henri B. Kagan.
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From the reviews: "This recent book by Uwe Meierhenrich ... should be of interest to a wide audience of (astro) chemists, (astro) biologists, physicists, and geologists. ... The book is well referenced ... and also contains a useful index plus an appendix on amino acids found in the Murchion meteorite. ... Overall, this is an excellent and welcome contribution to the field. It should be essential reading for anyone concerned with the far-reaching and exciting subject of chirobiogenesis ... ." (Pedro Cintas, Chirality, 2009) "The book ... is of interest to a very broad readership covering the whole spectrum of theoreticians, (including even philosophers), chemists, physicists, biologists, astronomers, and space engineers interested in the fascinating subject of the origins of life on Earth and in Space and the possibility of extant life traces on extraterrestrial bodies. ... In sum I would strongly recommend Meierhenrich's book ... . The book is a 'must' for everybody working in or near the ever spreading realm of space technology ... ." (Wolfram H.-P. Thiemann, Origin of Life and Evolution of Biospheres, Issue 1, 2009) "It is a rare event when a book both teaches and inspires. This one does both in spades. ... Additional studies, which are covered in this work, look at either the enrichment or destruction of one form over the other, under conditions postulated to have existed when the Earth was young. ... The book is well written and organized and provides competing experimental evidence and theories on this controversial subject. ... Summing Up: Highly recommended. Graduate students and above." (J. M. Tomich, Choice, Vol. 46 (8), April, 2009)


Tracing Life's Origin: From Amino Acids to Space Mission ROSETTA.- Stereochemistry for the Study of the Origin of Life.- Minority Report: Life's Chiral Molecules of Opposite Handedness.- When Crystals Deliver Chirality to Life.- When Parity Falls: The Weak Nuclear Interaction.- Chiral Fields: Light, Magnetism, and Chirality.- Key to the Prebiotic Origin of Amino Acids.- A New Record for Chiral Molecules in Meteorites.- The New Space Race: Chiral Molecules on Comets and on Mars.- Accelerating the Carousel: Amplification mechanisms.