Today, a team of evolutionary biologists from Rice University in the USA presented the results of their rather unusual and even surprising study, devoted to the consideration of a new concept and theory about the origin of life on Earth. The focus of their research is the analysis of a rather simple and at the same time unusual form of the protein of the ferredoxin family, which is one of the key elements due to which the first cellular organisms managed to survive many billions of years ago by developing a certain metabolic process and system – so scientists started a new study of this simple protein.
In particular, they decided to test the theory that it was this simple protein that became the very catalyst that gave rise to the polysyllabic organisms on our planet – for this, the engineers engineeringly changed the bacterial genome of E. Coli and removed the more complex metabolic protein of this the same family, instead of it put a synthetically created simple ferredoxin.
Despite the fact that in its form and functionality this simple protein is much more primitive than those proteins that regulate the metabolic processes of modern living creatures – including us, people – nevertheless, specialists managed to achieve really interesting results. Since the ferredoxin proteins introduced by engineering, in fact, allowed the E. Coli bacteria to continue to live and develop, albeit noticeably slower than using their modern developed genome. The results of the study point to several interesting things that can change the whole picture of evolution.
Scientists note that they were primarily interested in illustrating the evolutionary genealogy of this simple family of proteins – because they believe that they were the catalysts for the emergence of more complex life forms many billions of years ago on Earth. In addition, they have a promising character and for use in genetics.