Formamide detected in Nebulosa NGC1333/NASA-Spitzer From ScienceDaily:
One of science’s greatest challenges is learning about the origin of life and its precursor molecules. Formamide (NH2CHO) is an excellent candidate for helping to search for answers as it contains four essential elements (nitrogen, hydrogen, carbon and oxygen), and can synthesise amino acids, carbohydrates, nucleic acids and other key compounds for living organisms.
However, this molecule is also abundant in space, mainly in molecular clouds or the concentrations of gas and dust where stars are born. This has been confirmed by an international team of researchers, including Spanish investigators, after searching for formamide in ten star-forming regions.
“We have detected formamide in five protosuns, which proves that this molecule (in all probability also true for our Solar System) is relatively abundant in molecular clouds and is formed in the very early stages of evolution towards a star and its planets,” explains Ana López Sepulcre, lead author of the study and researcher at the University of Tokyo (Japan).
The other five objects where formamide has not been detected are less evolved and colder, “which indicates that a minimum temperature is needed for it to be detected in the gas,” adds the scientist. More.
Maybe this is a lead, but see: World’s “oldest microfossils” are probably not life forms after all, according to just-published research. So boring billions of years of Darwinian evolution apparently did not happen.
The underlying assumption seems to be that of Christian deDuve, that molecules in our universe naturally evolve toward life. For that view, see Does nature just “naturally” produce life?
vs. Can all the numbers for life’s origin just happen to fall into place?
See also: Why origin of life is such a conundrum
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