A new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) by researchers at Rutgers University in the United States suggests that nasa may be able to find life on other planets, using the origins of the protein structure responsible for metabolism.
A team of scientists led by Rutgers University, ENIGMA and The Direct Edreis, is using NASA funding to conduct the study. Their study predicted what the earliest proteins looked like 3.5 billion to 2.5 billion years ago, aiming to reveal the role of the simplest proteins in catalyzing life in the early stages.
The team focused on two protein folds, which may be the first structure of early metabolism. They are ferrooxygen-also-protein folding combined with iron-sulfur compounds, as well as Rothman folding patterns that bind nucleotides (components of DNA and RNA). These are two difficult problems that must be adapted to in the evolution of life.
Proteins are made up of long chains of amino acids, and proteins are folded from irregular curls into specific functional three-dimensional structures called protein folding. Ferrite also protein is a small molecule protein containing iron atoms and inorganic sulphides that act as an electron transfer device to promote metabolism.
The researchers say electrons flow through solids, liquids, gases and dynamic living systems, and the same electrons must exist in any planetary system that has the potential to exist in life. There is evidence that these two proteinfolds may have a common “ancestor” and, if true, it could be the first metabolic enzyme in life.