Sunday, January 13, 2013

Chosen topic - example 3

Okay, I think this will be my final example and it illustrates how to get to something interesting as quickly as possible.

One thing I hope you do is to jot down words and phrases in class that didn't get much explanation that sounded interesting.

On Thursday I think I mentioned that coacervates were one type of protobiont. And that's all I said about them!

So, assuming I'd written down 'coacervate??' in my notes here is how I would proceed.

As I mentioned in class Wikipedia is a great place to start. Their page on Coacervates is okay and tells us a bit more. In the first paragraph it includes this intriguing statement that links us back to Oparin:

Coacervates were famously proposed by Alexander Oparin as crucial in his early theory of abiogenesis (origin of life). This theory proposes that metabolism predated information replication. The debate as to whether metabolism or molecules capable of Template replication came first in the origins of life remains open[1]
[1] Origins of Life and Evolution of the Biosphere, Volume 40, Numbers 4-5, October 2010 , pp. 347-497(151)

So after less than 5 minutes at Wikipedia it's off to a paper in 'Origins of Life and Evolution of the Biosphere'. Which turns out to be a fascinating journal. [You'll need to access this through the libraries e-journals for full access - if you are off campus use the libraries off-campus login].

The reference turns out to be to a Special Issue: Workshop OQOL’ 09: OPEN QUESTIONS ON THE ORIGINS OF LIFE 2009. but the papers are only conference abstracts.

It looks like they have this as the theme of their conference every year though and the 2012 conference is now published and has more complete papers.

Some of these look fascinating:
How Does Biology Emerge From Chemistry?
and many more.

My point is that you should get to this point in 10-15 minutes and now you can start to select a paper or two to read more thoroughly

Oh, and if you still wanted to read about coacervates and haven't been sidetracked by something else (my inevitable fate) then you could search this journal for that term giving you 15 results.




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