Genesis - In The Beginning
Precursors of Life, Chemical Models and Early Biological Evolution
This book deals with the Origin of Life on Earth and planets, which is currently a very “hot” topic dealt with at several international meetings, conferences and workshops by various societies and groups. The current volume is number 22 of the “Cellular Origin, Life in Extreme Habitats and Astrobiology” series (COLE) published by Springer. The contributors review new data in this field, following current studies from gene and molecular to macro levels. The extremophiles – microorganisms living at the edge of Life under very severe conditions (from our anthropocentric view point) - may point out possibilities of existing Life forms on other planets and satellites.
In eight sections and fifty chapters, the seventy-five authors cover subjects such as chemical evolution, the function of geophysics in Life’s origin, the first steps of cellular evolution, Panspermia (the theory claiming that the source of Life is not from Earth but from Outer Space), possibility of extraterrestrial Life (Astrobiology), and the history of origin of Life on Earth and beyond.
This up-to-date book complements volume 6 (Origin Genesis, Evolution and Diversity of Life (2004) in the COLE series (ISBN: 978-1-4020-1813-8) published by Kluwer Academic Publishers.
Professor D. Deamer ends his Introduction with these words: Future progress in understanding the origin of life will involve simulations of prebiotic conditions that take this complexity into account. Some of the chapters in this book focus on specific aspects of the chemical and physical processes that would be involved in life's origins, while others incorporate increments in complexity such as mineral surfaces and compartments. In a sense, each chapter represents a piece of a puzzle, and readers who take the time to read all the chapters may see unexpected patterns emerge that will give clues to solving the puzzle.
The primary audience for this book are general biologists, geologists, geneticists, astrobiologists and astrophysicists, and advance undergraduate and graduate students, researchers and teachers in those fields.