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Genesis In The Beginning

Genesis   In The Beginning Author Joseph Seckbach
ISBN-10 9789400729407
Release 2012-03-21
Pages 934
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Genesis – In The Beginning deals with the origin and diversity of Life and early biological evolution and discusses the question of where (hot or cold sources) and when the beginning of Life took place. Among the sections are chapters dealing with prebiotic chemical processes and considering self-replication of polymers in mineral habitats. One chapter is dedicated to the photobiological regime on early Earth and the emergence of Life. This volume covers the role of symmetry, information and order (homochrial biomolecules) in the beginning of Life. The models of protocells and the genetic code with gene transfer are important topics in this volume. Three chapters discuss the Panspermia hypothesis (to answer “Are we from outer Space?”). Other chapters cover the Astrobiological aspects of Life in the Universe in extraterrestrial Planets of the Solar System and deal with cometary hydrosphere (and its connection to Earth). We conclude with the history and frontiers of Astrobiogy.



Life on Earth and other Planetary Bodies

Life on Earth and other Planetary Bodies Author Arnold Hanslmeier
ISBN-10 9789400749665
Release 2012-10-29
Pages 534
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A trio of editors [Professors from Austria, Germany and Israel] present Life on Earth and other Planetary Bodies. The contributors are from twenty various countries and present their research on life here as well as the possibility for extraterrestrial life. This volume covers concepts such as life’s origin, hypothesis of Panspermia and of life possibility in the Cosmos. The topic of extraterrestrial life is currently ‘hot’ and the object of several congresses and conferences. While the diversity of “normal” biota is well known, life on the edge of the extremophiles is more limited and less distributed. Other subjects discussed are Astrobiology with the frozen worlds of Mars, Europa and Titan where extant or extinct microbial life may exist in subsurface oceans; conditions on icy Mars with its saline, alkaline, and liquid water which has been recently discovered; chances of habitable Earth-like [or the terrestrial analogues] exoplanets; and SETI’s search for extraterrestrial Intelligence.



Reticulate Evolution

Reticulate Evolution Author Nathalie Gontier
ISBN-10 9783319163451
Release 2015-07-09
Pages 337
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Written for non-experts, this volume introduces the mechanisms that underlie reticulate evolution. Chapters are either accompanied with glossaries that explain new terminology or timelines that position pioneering scholars and their major discoveries in their historical contexts. The contributing authors outline the history and original context of discovery of symbiosis, symbiogenesis, lateral gene transfer, hybridization or divergence with gene flow and infectious heredity. By applying key insights from the areas of molecular (phylo)genetics, microbiology, virology, ecology, systematics, immunology, epidemiology and computational science, they demonstrate how reticulate evolution impacts successful survival, fitness and speciation. Reticulate evolution brings forth a challenge to the standard Neo-Darwinian framework, which defines life as the outcome of bifurcation and ramification patterns brought forth by the vertical mechanism of natural selection. Reticulate evolution puts forward a pattern in the tree of life that is characterized by horizontal mergings and lineage crossings induced by symbiosis, symbiogenesis, lateral gene transfer, hybridization or divergence with gene flow and infective heredity, making the “tree of life” look more like a “web of life.” On an epistemological level, the various means by which hereditary material can be transferred horizontally challenges our classic notions of units and levels of evolution, fitness, modes of transmission, linearity, communities and biological individuality. The case studies presented examine topics including the origin of the eukaryotic cell and its organelles through symbiogenesis; the origin of algae through primary and secondary symbiosis and dinoflagellates through tertiary symbiosis; the superorganism and holobiont as units of evolution; how endosymbiosis induces speciation in multicellular life forms; transferrable and non-transferrable plasmids and how they symbiotically interact with their host; the means by which pro- and eukaryotic organisms transfer genes laterally (bacterial transformation, transduction and conjugation as well as transposons and other mobile genetic elements); hybridization and divergence with gene flow in sexually-reproducing individuals; current (human) microbiome and viriome studies that impact our knowledge concerning the evolution of organismal health and acquired immunity; and how symbiosis and symbiogenesis can be modelled in computational evolution.



First Steps in the Origin of Life in the Universe

First Steps in the Origin of Life in the Universe Author Julian Chela-Flores
ISBN-10 9789401010177
Release 2011-06-28
Pages 428
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Proceedings of the Sixth Trieste Conference on Chemical Evolution, Trieste, Italy, 18-22 September 2000



Complete Course in Astrobiology

Complete Course in Astrobiology Author Gerda Horneck
ISBN-10 9783527619009
Release 2008-06-25
Pages 434
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This up-to-date resource is based on lectures developed by experts in the relevant fields and carefully edited by the leading astrobiologists within the European community. Aimed at graduate students in physics, astronomy and biology and their lecturers, the text begins with a general introduction to astrobiology, followed by sections on basic prebiotic chemistry, extremophiles, and habitability in our solar system and beyond. A discussion of astrodynamics leads to a look at experimental facilities and instrumentation for space experiments and, ultimately, astrobiology missions, backed in each case by the latest research results from this fascinating field. Includes a CD-ROM with additional course material.



The Diatom World

The Diatom World Author Joseph Seckbach
ISBN-10 9400713274
Release 2011-07-23
Pages 534
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Diatom biology, genomics and ecology are becoming more relevant to the human species. While there have been recent compilations of some of the applied aspects of diatoms, and the dizzying pace of taxonomic revisions, this new volume bring us up to date on their classification, biology and ecology, as well as covering the topics of genomics and applied uses. In this collection, some of the leaders in diatom research present either new information or summarize recent research efforts on a wide range of topics, including the tree of life of diatoms, their classifications, the wide habitats and ecological spectra the group exploits, as well as the beauty of their form. This volume celebrates the diversity, emerging areas of research and fascinating ecology of the diatoms bringing this group of world-renown and emerging research leaders together. 'The Diatom World' will foster greater appreciation and research contributions on this incredibly diverse and fascinating group of organisms.



The Theory of Evolution and Its Impact

The Theory of Evolution and Its Impact Author Aldo Fasolo
ISBN-10 8847019745
Release 2011-11-27
Pages 230
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Year 2009 was the triumph of Darwin as a global superstar, spinning from the pop icon to the actual understanding to what make him a great innovator, able to give a turn to whole modern culture. Does all this activity mean evolution has lost its ability to excite fear and opposition? After such a deluge of books, conferences, reviews, gadgets, what is today our vision on theory of Evolution and its Impact? These are the questions asked at an inter-academy conference held in Torino (May 27-29, 2010) among the Accademia delle Scienze di Torino, the Accademia Nazionale dei Lincei and the Berlin-Brandenburgische Akademie der Wissenschaften. The present book collects the contributions from the meeting, mixing styles, arguments, topics, history and philosophy of science, modern biology and epistemology . This kind of inter-disciplinary approach may appear erratic, but it conveys flashes of lights on the changing scene where the theory of evolution plays. This is in line with the idea to reopen the file of the Two Cultures, looking at shared problems, which are not yet really the Third Culture invoked by Charles Percy Snow half a century ago, but they can foster it, at least in such a pivotal domain as evolution. According to the philosopher Michael Ruse, the conclusion is “that in fifty years or a hundred years we will still have the theory of the Origin around. Great, precisely because it does not stand still, but remakes itself and grows and changes by virtue of the fact that it gives such a terrific foundation. Is Darwinism past its sell-by date? Not by a long chalk yet!”



Astrobiology

Astrobiology Author Gerda Horneck
ISBN-10 9783642593819
Release 2012-12-06
Pages 411
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This book bridges a gap in the literature by bringing together leading specialists from different backgrounds. It addresses the specific need for a readable book on this very interdisciplinary and new topic at research level.



The Fifth Miracle

The Fifth Miracle Author Paul Davies
ISBN-10 9781439126820
Release 2015-09-22
Pages 304
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ARE WE ALONE IN THE UNIVERSE? In his latest far-reaching book, The Fifth Miracle, internationally acclaimed physicist and writer Paul Davies confronts one of science's great outstanding mysteries -- the origin of life. Three and a half billion years ago, Mars resembled Earth. It was warm and wet and could have supported primitive organisms. If life once existed on Mars, might it have originated there and traveled to Earth inside meteorites blasted into space by cosmic impacts? Davies builds on the latest scientific discoveries and theories to address the larger question: What, exactly, is life? Is it the inevitable by-product of physical laws, as many scientists maintain, or an almost miraculous accident? Are we alone in the universe, or will life emerge on all Earth-like planets? And if there is life elsewhere in the universe, is it preordained to evolve toward greater complexity and intelligence? On the answers to these deep questions hinges the ultimate purpose of mankind -- who we are and what our place might be in the unfolding drama of the cosmos.



Frontiers of Astrobiology

Frontiers of Astrobiology Author Chris Impey
ISBN-10 9781139789226
Release 2012-11-15
Pages
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Astrobiology is an exciting interdisciplinary field that seeks to answer one of the most important and profound questions: are we alone? In this volume, leading international experts explore the frontiers of astrobiology, investigating the latest research questions that will fascinate a wide interdisciplinary audience at all levels. What is the earliest evidence for life on Earth? Where are the most likely sites for life in the Solar System? Could life have evolved elsewhere in the Galaxy? What are the best strategies for detecting intelligent extraterrestrial life? How many habitable or Earth-like exoplanets are there? Progress in astrobiology over the past decade has been rapid and, with evidence accumulating that Mars once hosted standing bodies of liquid water, the discovery of over 500 exoplanets and new insights into how life began on Earth, the scientific search for our origins and place in the cosmos continues.



Young Sun Early Earth and the Origins of Life

Young Sun  Early Earth and the Origins of Life Author Muriel Gargaud
ISBN-10 9783642225529
Release 2013-01-11
Pages 301
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- How did the Sun come into existence? - How was the Earth formed? - How long has Earth been the way it is now, with its combination of oceans and continents? - How do you define “life”? - How did the first life forms emerge? - What conditions made it possible for living things to evolve? All these questions are answered in this colourful textbook addressing undergraduate students in "Origins of Life" courses and the scientifically interested public. The authors take the reader on an amazing voyage through time, beginning five thousand million years ago in a cloud of interstellar dust and ending five hundred million years ago, when the living world that we see today was finally formed. A chapter on exoplanets provides an overview of the search for planets outside the solar system, especially for habitable ones. The appendix closes the book with a glossary, a bibliography of further readings and a summary of the Origins of the Earth and life in fourteen boxes.



Extremophiles Handbook

Extremophiles Handbook Author Koki Horikoshi
ISBN-10 9784431538974
Release 2010-12-08
Pages 608
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The Extremophiles Handbook brings together the rapidly growing and often scattered information on microbial life in the whole range of extreme environments. This book will be a useful reference for finding clues to the origin of life and for exploring the biotechnology potential of these fascinating organisms.



The Codes of Life

The Codes of Life Author Marcello Barbieri
ISBN-10 9781402063404
Release 2007-10-26
Pages 440
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Building on a range of disciplines – from biology and anthropology to philosophy and linguistics – this book draws on the expertise of leading names in the study of organic, mental and cultural codes brought together by the emerging discipline of biosemiotics. The volume represents the first multi-authored attempt to deal with the range of codes relevant to life, and to reveal the ubiquitous role of coding mechanisms in both organic and mental evolution.



What is Life On Earth and Beyond

What is Life  On Earth and Beyond Author Andreas Losch
ISBN-10 9781107175891
Release 2017-07-31
Pages 332
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Approaches from the sciences, philosophy and theology, including the emerging field of astrobiology, can provide fresh perspectives to the age-old question 'What is Life?'. Has the secret of life been unveiled and is it nothing more than physical chemistry? Modern philosophers will ask if we can even define life at all, as we still don't know much about its origins here on Earth. Others regard life as something that cannot simply be reduced to just physics and chemistry, while biologists emphasize the historical component intrinsic to life on Earth. How can theology constructively interpret scientific findings? Can it contribute constructively to scientific discussions? Written for a broad interdisciplinary audience, this probing volume discusses life, intelligence and more against the background of contemporary biology and the wider contexts of astrobiology and cosmology. It also considers the challenging implications for science and theology if extraterrestrial life is discovered in the future.



Life in the Universe

Life in the Universe Author Dirk Schulze-Makuch
ISBN-10 9783540768166
Release 2008-10-02
Pages 251
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Examines each of these parameters in crucial depth and makes the argument that life forms we would recognize may be more common in our solar system than many assume. Considers exotic forms of life that would not have to rely on carbon as the basic chemical element, solar energy as the main energy source, or water as the primary solvent and the question of detecting bio- and geosignatures of such life forms, ranging from earth environments to deep space. Seeks an operational definition of life and investigate the realm of possibilities that nature offers to realize this very special state of matter. Avoids scientific jargon wherever possible to make this intrinsically interdisciplinary subject understandable to a broad range of readers.



Origins of Life The Primal Self Organization

Origins of Life  The Primal Self Organization Author Richard Egel
ISBN-10 3642216250
Release 2011-08-31
Pages 366
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If theoretical physicists can seriously entertain canonical “standard models” even for the big-bang generation of the entire universe, why cannot life scientists reach a consensus on how life has emerged and settled on this planet? Scientists are hindered by conceptual gaps between bottom-up inferences (from early Earth geological conditions) and top-down extrapolations (from modern life forms to common ancestral states). This book challenges several widely held assumptions and argues for alternative approaches instead. Primal syntheses (literally or figuratively speaking) are called for in at least five major areas. (1) The first RNA-like molecules may have been selected by solar light as being exceptionally photostable. (2) Photosynthetically active minerals and reduced phosphorus compounds could have efficiently coupled the persistent natural energy flows to the primordial metabolism. (3) Stochastic, uncoded peptides may have kick-started an ever-tightening co-evolution of proteins and nucleic acids. (4) The living fossils from the primeval RNA World thrive within modern cells. (5) From the inherently complex protocellular associations preceding the consolidation of integral genomes, eukaryotic cell organization may have evolved more naturally than simple prokaryote-like life forms. – If this book can motivate dedicated researchers to further explore the alternative mechanisms presented, it will have served its purpose well.



Wilhelm Reich Biologist

Wilhelm Reich  Biologist Author James E. Strick
ISBN-10 9780674286887
Release 2015-04-01
Pages 467
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Wilhelm Reich’s experiments in the 1930s with cutting-edge light microscopy and time-lapse micro-cinematography were considered discredited, but not because of shoddy lab technique, as has been claimed. Scientific opposition to Reich’s experiments, James Strick argues, grew out of resistance to his unorthodox sexual theories and Marxist leanings.