Mystery of the origin of life

Scientists from Japan and China showed that the early evolution of life on Earth is much more complicated than previously thought. The results of a study revealing the mystery of the origin of the first living organisms, published in the journal Molecular Biology and Evolution.

the Experts concluded that, when comparing genomes can be obtained only limited knowledge of ancient single-celled organisms, including bacteria and archaea. The researchers analyzed thousands of phylogenetic trees constructed on the basis of similarity of DNA of thousands of organisms, to identify the most ancient genes and to follow their evolution.

it Turned out that in the early stages of evolution of living organisms different types of genes changed at different speeds. This means that the frequency of early mutations was much higher than at present. Thus, life evolved very rapidly, and this complicates the picture of how the archaea and bacteria got their energy for life and the environment in which they lived.

Biologists klassificeret all living organisms into three main groups called domains. Two of these domains bacteria and archaea consist of unicellular organisms, and the third — the eukaryotes — includes most multicellular organisms. Eukaryotes evolved relatively recently, however, the history of the first two domains remains poorly understood.