Physical Chemistry

RNA auto-polymerisation from 2’,3’-cyclic nucleotides at air-water interfaces

Authors

  • Avinash Vicholous Dass Systems Biophysics, Faculty of Physics, Ludwig-Maximili- ans-Universität München, Amalienstr. 54, 80799 München, Germany ,
  • Sreekar Wunnava Systems Biophysics, Faculty of Physics, Ludwig-Maximili- ans-Universität München, Amalienstr. 54, 80799 München, Germany ,
  • Juliette Langlais Systems Biophysics, Faculty of Physics, Ludwig-Maximili- ans-Universität München, Amalienstr. 54, 80799 München, Germany ,
  • Beatriz von der Esch Chair of Theoretical Chemistry, Department of Chemistry, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München Butentandtstraße 5-13, 81377, Munich, Germany ,
  • Maik Krusche Systems Biophysics, Faculty of Physics, Ludwig-Maximili- ans-Universität München, Amalienstr. 54, 80799 München, Germany ,
  • Lennard Ufer Systems Biophysics, Faculty of Physics, Ludwig-Maximili- ans-Universität München, Amalienstr. 54, 80799 München, Germany ,
  • Nico Chrisam Systems Biophysics, Faculty of Physics, Ludwig-Maximili- ans-Universität München, Amalienstr. 54, 80799 München, Germany ,
  • Romeo C. A. Dubini Faculty of Chemistry and Pharmacy, Ludwig-Maximilians- Universität München Butentandtstraße 5-13, 81377, Munich, Germany ,
  • Florian Gartner Faculty of Physics, Statistical and biological physics, Lud- wig-Maximilians-Universität München, Theresienstraße. 37, D-80333, Munich, Germany ,
  • Severin Angerpointner Faculty of Physics, Statistical and biological physics, Lud- wig-Maximilians-Universität München, Theresienstraße. 37, D-80333, Munich, Germany ,
  • Christina F. Dirscherl Systems Biophysics, Faculty of Physics, Ludwig-Maximili- ans-Universität München, Amalienstr. 54, 80799 München, Germany ,
  • Petra Rovó Institute of Science and Technology Austria c/o NMR Facility, Am Campus 1, A-3400 Klosterneuburg, Austria & Faculty of Chemistry and Pharmacy, Ludwig-Maximilians- Universität München Butentandtstraße 5-13, 81377, Munich, Germany ,
  • Christof B. Mast Systems Biophysics, Faculty of Physics, Ludwig-Maximili- ans-Universität München, Amalienstr. 54, 80799 München, Germany ,
  • Judit Šponer Institute of Biophysics Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic Královopolská 135, 61265 Brno, Czech Republic ,
  • Christian Ochsenfeld Max Planck Institute for Solid State Research, Heisenbergstr. 1, D-70569 Stuttgart, Germany & Chair of Theoretical Chemistry, Department of Chemistry, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München Butentandtstraße 5-13, 81377, Munich, Germany ,
  • Erwin Frey Faculty of Physics, Statistical and biological physics, Lud- wig-Maximilians-Universität München, Theresienstraße. 37, D-80333, Munich, Germany ,
  • Dieter Braun Systems Biophysics, Faculty of Physics, Ludwig-Maximili- ans-Universität München, Amalienstr. 54, 80799 München, Germany

Abstract

For the emergence of life, the abiotic synthesis of RNA from its monomers is a central challenge. We found alkaline drying conditions in bulk and at heated air-water interfaces where 2 ́,3 ́-cyclic nucleotides reacted to form copolymers up to 10-mers. The polymerisation proceeded at a pH range of 7-12, temperatures between 40-80 °C and was enhanced by K+ ions. Among the canonical nucleotides, cGMP polymerised most efficiently. Our study suggests a polymerisation mechanism where cGMP polymerises first to form a polymorphic scaffold into which the other relatively unreactive nucleotides copolymerise. The 2 ́,3 ́-cyclic monomers are often products in prebiotic phosphorylation, nucleotide syntheses and recyclable intermediates of RNA hydrolyses. The plausible abiotic availability and the simple dry polymerisation conditions, combined with hydrolytic recycling offers an appealing minimal entry point for RNA-based molecular evolution on early Earth.

Content

Thumbnail image of 2'3' polymerisation Manuscript_ChemRxiv.pdf

Supplementary material

Thumbnail image of Supplimentary info_Submission 14022022.pdf
RNA auto-polymerisation from 2’,3’–cyclic nucleotides at air-water interfaces
Data associated to the main content of 'RNA auto-polymerisation from 2’,3’–cyclic nucleotides at air-water interfaces'