OoL digest — August 1st edition

Good evening from Montreal. This week again there’s been a lot of very interesting research in fields related to the OoL. First, we have a paper in the field of Artificial Life, from Olivi, that reviews approaches for recreating a functional cell cycle in an artificial cell. In Astrobiology, Boukrouche develops a band-grey model to be applied on rocky exoplanets in a runaway greenhouse state, Huang reviews assessments of ammonia as a biosignature, Mayorga examines the Earth’s transmission spectra in order to determine if current methologies are sufficient to detect biosignature in similar exoplanetary spectra and Roth reports the detection by HST of a sublimated water atmosphere on Ganymede. We also have several papers in Biology: Chen examines how multicellularity can explain phylogenic patterns, Dunk investigates how complexity arises in cell-cycle regulation, Johnston analyzes the emergence of symmetry in the context of an algorithmic picture of evolution, Lyons reviews oxygen production in Earth’s middle history, and Sandström examines how HCN dimerization may be a key step in the formation of various prebiotic building blocks. Finally, in Paleontology we have a paper by Cavalazzi that reports the discovery of a 3.5 Gyr microfossil in South Africa. Happy reading !

Artificial Life

Towards a synthetic cell cycle – Olivi et al. – Nature Communications


Beyond runaway: initiation of the post-runaway greenhouse state on rocky exoplanets – Boukrouche et al. – preprint

Assessment of Ammonia as a Biosignature Gas in Exoplanet Atmospheres – Huang et al. – preprint

Transmission Spectroscopy of the Earth-Sun System to Inform the Search for Extrasolar Life – Mayorga et al. – preprint

A sublimated water atmosphere on Ganymede detected from Hubble Space Telescope observations – Roth et al. – Nature Astronomy


Multicellularity and sex helped shape the Tree of Life – Chen et al. – Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences

Evolution of Regulatory Complexity for Cell-Cycle Control – Dunk et al. – preprint

Symmetry and simplicity spontaneously emerge from the algorithmic nature of evolution – Johnston et al. – preprint

Oxygenation, Life, and the Planetary System during Earth’s Middle History: An Overview – Lyons et al. – Astrobiology

The Beginning of HCN Polymerization: Iminoacetonitrile Formation and Its Implications in Astrochemical Environments – Sandström et al. – ACS Earth and Space Chemistry


Cellular remains in a ~3.42-billion-year-old subseafloor hydrothermal environment – Cavalazzi et al. – Science Advances