ChemRxiv
These are preliminary reports that have not been peer-reviewed. They should not be regarded as conclusive, guide clinical practice/health-related behavior, or be reported in news media as established information. For more information, please see our FAQs.
1/1
2 files
0/0

Synthesis of RNA nucleotides in plausible prebiotic conditions from ab initio computer simulations

preprint
revised on 27.04.2018 and posted on 27.04.2018 by Andrea Pérez-Villa, A. Marco Saitta, Thomas Georgelin, Jean-François Lambert, François Guyot, Marie-Christine Maurel, Fabio Pietrucci
Understanding the mechanism of spontaneous formation of ribonucleotides under realistic prebiotic conditions is a key open issue of origins-of-life research. In cells, de novo and salvage nucleotide enzymatic synthesis combines 5-phospho-α -D-ribose-1-diphosphate ( α-PRPP) and nucleobases. Interestingly, these reactants are also known as prebiotically plausible compounds. Combining ab initio molecular dynamics simulations with recently developed reaction exploration and enhanced sampling methods, we show that nucleobases and α -PRPP should spontaneously combine, under mild hydrothermal conditions, with an exothermic reaction and a facile mechanism, forming both purine and pyrimidine ribonucleotides.
Surprisingly, this mechanism is very similar to the biological one, and yields ribonucleotides with the same anomeric carbon chirality as in biological systems.
These results suggest that natural selection might have optimized -- through enzymes -- a pre-existing ribonucleotide formation mechanism, carrying it forward to modern life forms.

Funding

This work was supported by French state funds managed by the ANR within the Investissements d’Avenir programme under reference ANR-11-IDEX-0004-02, within the framework of the cluster of excellence MATeriaux Interfaces Surfaces Environnement (MATISSE) led by Sorbonne Universités

History

Email Address of Submitting Author

andrea.perez_villa@sorbonne-universite.fr

Email Address(es) for Other Author(s)

marco.saitta@sorbonne-universite.fr, thomas.georgelin@upmc.fr, jean-francois.lambert@upmc.fr, francois.guyot@mnhn.fr, marie-christine.maurel@upmc.fr, fabio.pietrucci@sorbonne-universite.fr

Institution

Sorbonne Université - Faculté des Sciences et Ingénierie

Country

France

ORCID For Submitting Author

0000-0002-2836-9913

Declaration of Conflict of Interest

No conflict of interest

Exports