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Submarine hydrothermal systems : a probable site for the origin of life Public Deposited

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  • Submarine hydrothermal systems provide all of the conditions necessary for the abiotic synthesis of organic compounds, polymers, and simple cell-like organisms. An analysis of the Archaean rock and fossil record shows that fossils of simple organisms are found in rocks deposited in hydrothermal environments. Biochemical experiments have shown that thermal energy is an efficient means for the abiotic synthesis of 11protocell 11 structures. The continuous flow of circulating fluids in a hydrothermal system provides the thermal and chemical gradients which create the variation in cond'itions necessary for the successive reactions to take place. Other models for the origin of life fail to fulfill one or more of these requirements.
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