Origin: Anc Greek
?-/a (privative, ?non?)
????/vios(=life) > ???/via(=rush)
?????/ genea(=generation) > ?????/geno (=birth to)
life from non-life
Louis Pasteur abolished the theory of spontaneous generation (1859)and he simultaneously established the theory of biogenesis that supports the origin of life from preexisting life. In 1870 Thomas Huxley coined the term abiogenesis:
I shall call the . . . doctrine that living matter may be produced by not living matter, the hypothesis of abiogenesis. --Huxley, 1870.
|Thomas Huxley (1825-1895)|
In the 1950s, Harold Urey and Stanley L. Miller, performed the first experiment attempting to reproduce the chemical conditions of a primitive Earth using water, methane, ammonia, and hydrogen. During Miller and Urey's original experiment, Miller and Urey observed that as much as 10-15% of the carbon within the system was now in the form of organic compounds, including 13 of the 21 that are used to make proteins in living cells, with glycine as the most abundant. The Urey-Miller experiment showed that many organic molecules are easy to synthesize under a wide variety of conditions, including different atmospheric compositions and energy sources.
The process through biological life arises from inorganic matter, spontaneous origination. Abiogenesis is a theory that attempts to explain the origin of life through random natural processes.
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