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Origin of Life - How Life Started on Earth

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Origin of Life - How Life Started on Earth

Four and a half billion years ago, the young Earth was a hellish place—a seething chaos of meteorite impacts, volcanoes belching noxious gases, and lightning flashing through a thin, torrid atmosphere. Then, in a process that has puzzled scientists for decades, life emerged. But how? Mineralogist Robert Hazen as he journeys around the globe. From an ancient Moroccan market to the Australian Outback, he advances a startling and counterintuitive idea—that the rocks beneath our feet were not only essential to jump-starting life, but that microbial life helped give birth to hundreds of minerals we know and depend on today. It's a theory of the co-evolution of Earth and life that is reshaping the grand-narrative of our planet’s story.

New evidence emerges on the origins of life


7 Theories on the Origin of Life


The Origin of Life on Earth: Theories and Explanations


Michio Kaku and Sadhguru on the Future Technologies by the year 2100
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The mysterious origins of life on Earth - Luka Seamus Wright

Where on Earth did life begin? Explore the hydrothermal vents in Earth’s crust as simple compounds gave way to complex life.

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Billions of years ago, simple organic compounds assembled into more complex coalitions that could grow and reproduce. At the time, Earth had widespread volcanic activity and a hostile atmosphere that made it almost devoid of a suitable environment for living things. So where did life begin? Luka Wright searches for the cradle of life that gave rise to the billions of species that inhabit our planet.

Lesson by Luka Seamus Wright, directed by Nick Hilditch.

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Thank you so much to our patrons for your support! Without you this video would not be possible! Marc Bilodeau, Peng, Tzu-Hsiang, paul g mohney, Maya Toll, Sebastian Regez, Bruno Hannud, Andreas Voltios, Shubham Arora, Ugur Doga Sezgin, Akinola Emmanuel, Kyanta Yap, Ricardo Rendon Cepeda, Ana Maria, Benjamin & Shannon Pinder, Ernest Chow, Bela Namyslik, Alan Froese, Anika Westburg, Nick Cozby, Shawar Khan, Michael Braun-Boghos, Rohan Gupta, Elizabeth Cruz, Yujing Jiang, Sarah Lundegaard, Vladimir Ivanchenko, Georg Gusewski, Rohit Lodha, Erica Zhuang, Aaron Henson, Julio Sabatés Rodríguez, Vivian & Gilbert Lee, Fahad Nasser Chowdhury, ரமணன், John simmons, June Reiling, Khalid AlAli, Mickey Mikeworth, Nathaniel Lupus, Yansong Li, Chung Wah Gnapp, Amber Alexander, Robert Patrick, Pi Guanghui, Barbara Younker, Ai Ejima, Soma Ali, Roman Pinchuk, Raheem and Hector Quintanilla.
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Origin of Life: How Life Started on Earth. (2016) HD

Four and a half billion years ago, the young Earth was a hellish place—a seething chaos of meteorite impacts, volcanoes belching noxious gases, and lightning flashing through a thin, torrid atmosphere. Then, in a process that has puzzled scientists for decades, life emerged. But how? Mineralogist Robert Hazen as he journeys around the globe. From an ancient Moroccan market to the Australian Outback, he advances a startling and counterintuitive idea—that the rocks beneath our feet were not only essential to jump-starting life, but that microbial life helped give birth to hundreds of minerals we know and depend on today. It's a theory of the co-evolution of Earth and life that is reshaping the grand-narrative of our planet’s story.
Source: Cosmology Today™
Uploaded for educational purposes only.
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How Life Began w/ Neil deGrasse Tyson NOVA Origins

Join the hunt for hardy microbes that flourish in the most unlikely places: inside rocks in a mine shaft two miles down, inside a cave dripping with acid as strong as a car battery's, and in noxious gas bubbles erupting from the Pacific ocean floor. The survival of these tough microorganisms suggests they may be related to the planet's first primitive life forms. Host astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson deepens the search by investigating tantalizing and controversial chemical signatures of life inside three-billion-year-old rocks and meteorites found around the world.
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Where Did Life Come From? (feat. PBS Space Time and Eons!)

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The origin of life is one of the most important mysteries in all of science. When did life begin? How did life first evolve from chemistry? Where did life get started? In some primordial soup or somewhere else? Let’s journey back to the origin of life, as best as we know it, from the RNA world do the last universal common ancestor of everything alive today.

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Origin of life on earth - How Life started on earth

Understanding of how life started on the earth. Life appeared on earth almost 4 billion years ago.

Origin of life on earth can be understood in the background of origin of earth and universe.

With Big Bang, the universe expanded and temperature came down. The gravity condensed gases and formed galaxies. Earth evolved around 4.5 billion years ago, in Milky Way galaxy.

On early earth, there was a hostile environment. Water vapor, CH4, NH3, CO2 releasing from earth surface.

There are several theories on origin of life.

Panspermia: According to ancient Greeks, units of life called spores transferred to earth.

Spontaneous Generation: believes life arouse from rotting and decayed material.

But, spontaneous generation was turned down by, Louis Pasteur’s experiments.

In pre-­‐sterilized flasks life didn’t evolve from dead yeast but in other flask open to air, which contains life forms like bacteria, living organism arose from dead yeast. Implying life comes only from pre-­‐existing life.

However how the first life came on earth?

Oparin and halden proposed that, first form of life could have come from preexisting non-­‐living organic molecules (RNA, Protein), after the chemical evolution in which organic molecules formed from inorganic constituents.

To test this hypothesis, Miller, at laboratory scale, created similar condition of early earth.

He set up, electric discharge in a closed flask containing CH4, NH3, H2 and water vapor at 800C and observed formation of amino acid, building blocks of protein.

With this evidence chemical evolution theory is partly accepted.

How Did Life Begin?

Researched and Written by Leila Battison
Narrated and Edited by David Kelly
Script Edited by Pete Kelly
Art by Khail Kupsky
Thumbnail Art by Ettore Mazza

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Can Science Explain the Origin of Life?

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Darwin's theory of biological evolution helps us understand how simple life forms can give rise to complex lifeforms, but how did the first reproducing creatures come about? The origin of life needs its own explanation.

Scientists don't currently have a complete explanation for life's origins, but different labs around the globe are looking into the idea that life may have emerged from chemistry. In this animation you will learn why they are studying this idea, and you'll get to see a few of the fascinating things they have discovered.

Here are some links for further learning (organized by topic):

OVERVIEW OF CURRENT RESEARCH

Here David Deamer gives a wonderful overview of our current understanding of the origin of life. This hour long lecture is presented in clear language for all to follow:



SELF-ASSEMBLY

News article on the self assembly of gene-like columns:

Video series on the self assembly of primitive cell membranes:


Video interview with chemist Jack Szostak. In it he goes over his work on self-assembling membranes and genes.


Scientific journal exploring molecules with self-assembly properties. (You need a subscription to the journal to get past the abstract)



RNA SYNTHESIS

Video on John Sutherland's production of RNA nucleotides



EARLY FOSSILS

David Attenborough explores the lives of early organisms found in the fossil record. This video explores the evolution of early organisms but does not go over the origin of the first living things.



METABOLIC PATHWAYS

This research explores a primitive metabolic pathway which could have easily formed through chemical evolution on the ancient earth (you need a subscription to the journal to get past the abstract)


Websites for further learning:

This Interactive website outlines many of the discoveries made by life origin researchers.

This website explains the research goals and findings of the Center for Chemical Evolution at Georgia Tech:

CORRECTIONS:
In this animation I drew the meteorite sugars incorrectly. See this paper for accurate molecular diagrams of the sugars and sugar derivatives found in meteorites:

The Origin of Life on Earth

You must have wondered about it before, haven't you? How did life begin on earth? I mean the very first thing. The first unicellular organism, billions of years ago. Is it even possible? As it happens, our understanding of chemistry, biochemistry, and biology has become so sophisticated over the years, that we now have a pretty reasonable grasp as to how abiogenesis must have occurred. This is the spontaneous generation of life from non-living material. As incredible as it sounds, there is a lot of science to discuss here, so let's get into it!

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How did life begin? Abiogenesis. Origin of life from nonliving matter.

Sponsored by Kishore Tipirneni's new book A New Eden available here: | Abiogenesis – origin of life. Living matter from non-living matter. The origin of living organisms from inorganic or non-living material is called abiogenesis. But abiogenesis is not evolution.

Despite the incredible variations of life we see today, at the fundamental level, all living things contain three elements: Nucleic acids, Proteins, and lipids. These three things had to have been present in order for life to start.

The most important component may have been lipids which make up the cell walls because without a way to encapsulate certain elements, they various chemicals could not come together to potentially interact.

Lipids molecules have a unique structure. The round part loves water. The tail part hates water. So it has a tendency to self-assemble into natural spheres. However, when there are certain salt ions present, it destroys the lipid spheres. But RNA and other functions of a cell require salts and other ions. However, researchers at the University of Washington showed that lipid spheres do not disassemble if they are in the presence of amino acids, precursor to protein molecules. So it turns out that lipid cell walls and proteins need each other to exist, in salty water.

Today, genetic information is stored in DNA. RNA is created from DNA. The simplicity of RNA compared to its cousin DNA, is the reason that most scientists think DNA came from RNA. This is part of the “RNA world HYPOTHESIS, which theorizes that RNA was the essential precursor which led to the first living matter. But how did the first RNA molecule form from non-living chemicals? This is not clear cut, so here are some theories. RNA is made of three chemical components: the sugar ribose, the bases and phosphate. Figuring out how the bond between the bases and ribose first formed has been a difficult to replicate in the lab because cells in our body require complex enzymes to bring RNA building blocks together before they combine to form polymers. In a 2009 study, researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute showed that RNA could have formed on the surface of clays which act like catalysts to bring RNA bases together.

But how did proteins form? In the 1950s, several experiments by Stanley Miller and Harold Urey verified that the natural formation of amino acids, components of proteins, was possible under the atmospheric conditions of Primordial Earth. It turns out that it’s pretty easy to form many kinds of organic molecules, in a wide range of environments.

But having all the precursors get together inside a lipid cell wall does not necessarily mean that they will all come together to form a self-replicating living cell. This is not well understood.

There are creationist arguments such as, if I put all the parts of a watch in a big vat and keep stirring it, a functioning watch is not going to magically form inside the vat. And some cite an estimate by scientists Hoyle and Wickramasinghe showing that the probability of all the chemicals in a simple bacterium arising on their own by chance, is one in ten to the 40,000th power.

But these arguments are oversimplifications. They ignore the fact that sophisticated life forms like current day bacteria almost certainly did not arise spontaneously, but arose in much simpler incremental steps. The actual probability is not how the hundreds of complex chemicals can come together to form a modern day bacterium, but the probability of a few chemicals forming and coming together to form the precursors of life that can chemically evolve over time to form the simplest kind of life form that may have looked nothing like any evolved life form we see today.

But showing how even this chemical evolution could have happened is problematic. Scientists have had trouble figuring out what could have driven chemicals to evolve the complexity needed for biological functioning. But in 2014, Jeremy England, physics professor at MIT showed mathematically that the driving force for chemical evolution may be Entropy. The one thing that distinguishes living things from non-living things is its ability to capture energy and convert it to heat. England argues that when exposed to an external source of energy, such as the sun, any group of molecules will restructure themselves to dissipate more and more energy.

While there is no single generally accepted theory for the origin of life, all credible proposals show that life under natural conditions by a slow processes of chemical and molecular evolution could plausibly result in simple life forms over a long period of time. Do we have proof that this is how life came about – no. At least not yet. Is it plausible – absolutely.

#abiogenesis
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Life Begins: Crash Course Big History #4

In which Hank and John Green teach you about life on Earth. They won't be giving advice on how life should be lived, because this is a history series. Instead, they'll teach you about the earliest forms of life on Earth, and some of the ways that they developed into the types of life we know, love, and sometimes don't love so much (I'm looking at you here, opossums). You'll learn about prokaryotes, eukaryotes, panspermia, reproduction, a little about DNA, and even a thing or two about trees. Maybe.

Crash Course Biology
DNA Structure and Replication Episode:

DNA Transcription and Translation:

Learn more at

How Did Life Begin?

Scientists have long pondered how exactly life began here on Earth. Now, new research sheds light on Earth's creation, and the findings are not what you'd expect!

Read More:
RNA Was a Key Ingredient in Primordial Soup That Led to Life

How did we go from a lifeless Earth with no oxygen to a planet teeming with life and that essential element? Scientists at the Georgia Institute of Technology have found one crucial clue: iron and RNA.

Complex Biochemistry Possible at Origins of Life on Earth

A new study shows that RNA is capable of catalyzing electron transfer under conditions similar to those of the early Earth.

RNA With Iron As a Cofactor Catalyses Electron Transfer

Mg2+ is essential for RNA folding and catalysis. However, for the first 1.5 billion years of life on Earth RNA inhabited an anoxic Earth with abundant and benign Fe2+.

Origin of Life: Power Behind Primordial Soup Discovered

Researchers at the University of Leeds may have solved a key puzzle about how objects from space could have kindled life on Earth.

DNA vs RNA

The main difference between DNA and RNA is the sugar present in the molecules.

In The Prebiotic Kitchen

To explain the origin of life, scientists seek to explain the origin of its components.

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Incredible Animation Shows How Humans Evolved From Early Life

Humans have had a long history. 3.8 million years in the making, to be precise. From the primordial puddle to the modern day, here's how humans have evolved from the first life. The following is a review of the life forms depicted in the video:

Prokaryote, Cyanobacteria, Eukaryote, Choanoflagellate, Platyhelminthes (Flatworms), Pikaia, Haikouichthys, Agnatha, Placodermi, Cephalaspis, Coelacanth, Panderichthys, Tiktaalik, Acanthostega, Ichthyostega, Hynerpeton, Tulerpeton, Westlothiana, Hylonomus, Phthinosuchus, Cynognathus, Repenomamus, Juramaia, Plesiadapis, Carpolestes, Aegyptopithecus, Proconsul, Sivapithecus, Ouranopithecus, Orrorin, Ardipithecus, Australopithecus, Homo erectus, Neanderthal, Homo sapiens.

Special Thanks to Dr. Briana Pobiner, Research Scientist and Museum Educator of the Human Origins Program, Department of Anthropology at the Smithsonian Institute.

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Where is the Origin of Life on Earth?

To answer the iconic question “Are We Alone?”, scientists around the world are also attempting to understand the origin of life. There are many pieces to the puzzle of how life began and many ways to put them together into a big picture. Some of the pieces are firmly established by the laws of chemistry and physics. Others are conjectures about what Earth was like four billion years ago, based on extrapolations of what we know from observing Earth today. However, there are still major gaps in our knowledge and these are necessarily filled in by best guesses.

We invited talented scientists to discuss their different opinions about the origin of life and the site of life’s origin. Most of them will agree that liquid water was necessary, but if we had a time machine and went back in time, would we find life first in a hydrothermal submarine setting in sea water or a fresh water site associated with emerging land masses?

Biologist David Deamer, a Research Professor of Biomolecular Engineering at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and multi-disciplinary scientist Bruce Damer, Associate Researcher in the Department of Biomolecular Engineering at UC Santa Cruz, will describe their most recent work, which infers that hydrothermal pools are the most plausible site for the origin of life. Both biologists have been collaborating since 2016 on a full conception of the Terrestrial Origin of Life Hypothesis.

Lynn Rothschild, Senior Scientist at NASA’s Ames Research Center and Adjunct Professor of Molecular Biology, Cell Biology, and Biochemistry at Brown University, who is an astrobiologist/ synthetic biologist specializing in molecular approaches to evolution, particularly in microbes and the application of synthetic biology to NASA's missions, will provide an evolutionary biologist’s perspective on the subject.

Theories on the Origin of Life - Four Theories

Discusses four theories which explain the origin of life.
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Introduction to the Origin of Life

This dramatic video choreographed to powerful music introduces the viewer/student to the Origins of LIFE on Earth. It is designed as a motivational trailer to be shown by Biology and Life Science teachers in middle and high school and college as a visual Introduction to the topic of how life began.

Please rate this video and feel free to comment. If you like it, please help me spread the word by posting links on your media websites. The more students who can enjoy these dramatic videos, the better!

To view all of my videos in Biology, Earth Science, and Astronomy, subscribe to my channel at: I will be releasing new videos periodically.

I wish to thank all the quality video and music producers whose postings enabled me to assemble this video for educational use. To best enjoy this video, turn up your speakers. The music is very powerful and dramatic!

I can customize this video to add your name or school name at the end credits, for a very modest fee. If interested, email me at fsgregs@comcast.net

Until recently, you were able to download my videos for free from my other video storage site (vimeo.com). Recently, however, they began charging a significant membership fee to enable that feature, so I regret that downloading from there is no longer available. However, you can search for and obtain free download addons for your browser that will allow you to download my videos from either YouTube or Vimeo.

A Brief History of Life on Earth: The Full Series

From the Archean Eon to the Holocene Epoch, check out this SciShow mini-series for a primer about life on earth before heading on over to for a deep dive.

Hosted by: Stefan Chin

Part 1 - Survival is Hard: 0:41
Part 2 - When Life Exploded: 9:34
Part 3 - Dinosaur Time!: 19:46
Part 4 - Rise of the Humans: 28:14
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The chemical origin of life on earth | Marcel Eleveld | TEDxAlkmaar

How did life originate? This is one of the most fundamental questions of humankind and the central question of my PhD research. In my talk I will guide you through what we know so far about simple molecules becoming complex living systems and I will share my view on how we can further unravel the mystery of the origin of life of earth. How did life originate? This is one of the most fundamental questions of humankind and the central question of my PhD research. In my talk I will guide you through what we know so far about simple molecules becoming complex living systems and I will share my view on how we can further unravel the mystery of the origin of life of earth. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at

The Origin of Life - Scientific Evidence

011 - The Origin of Life - Scientific Evidence

Paul Andersen discusses scientific evidence of the origin of life on our planet. He begins with a brief discussion of the age of the earth and ends with the future of humanity. He includes geologic, chemical and molecular data.

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File:Banana and Cross Section.jpg. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed November 10, 2013.
File:BlueMarble-2001-2002.jpg. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed November 10, 2013.
File:Canyon-diablo-meteorite.jpg. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed November 10, 2013.
File:Geologic Clock with Events and Periods.svg. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed November 10, 2013.
File:Lord Kelvin Photograph.jpg. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed November 10, 2013.
File:Meteor.jpg. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed November 10, 2013.
File:Miller-Urey Experiment-en.svg. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed November 10, 2013.
File:Miller1999.jpg. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed November 10, 2013.
File:PPTCountdowntoSingularityLog.jpg. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed November 10, 2013.
File:Raymond Kurzweil Fantastic Voyage.jpg. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed November 10, 2013.
File:Tree of Life SVG.svg. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed November 10, 2013.
File:Universe Expansion2.png. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed November 10, 2013.
File:Urey.jpg. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed November 10, 2013.
Volcanoes May Have Sparked First Life | KPBS.org. Accessed November 10, 2013.

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5 Scientific Theories: The Origin Of Life On Earth

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Life on earth has come a long was since the very first single cell organisms. Life is now extremely complex and diverse. But where did life originate from? Where did all of this start? Where did we come from? This video aims to shed some light on five of the most scientifically accepted answers to those questions. I hope you enjoy!:-)

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The Origin Of Life On Earth
The Origin Of Life On Earth
The Origin Of Life On Earth
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