Dr Helen Greenwood Hansma | Energy: A Clue to the Origins of Life

May 25, 2022 | biology, physical sciences, trending

Original Article Reference

This SciPod is a summary of the paper ‘Mechanical Energy before Chemical Energy at the Origins of Life?’, in Sci. https://doi.org/10.3390/sci2040088 & https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bpj.2022.08.032

About this episode

Energy is vital for life. It allows important functions to occur in living systems, from the molecular level to the scale of the whole organism. Dr Helen Greenwood Hansma, from the University of California in Santa Barbara, believes that the types of energy used in living cells can provide clues to help us understand the origins of life. In her recent research, she explores how mechanical energy could have driven the processes that gave rise to early life in the absence of chemical energy.

 

 

 

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International LicenseCreative Commons License

What does this mean?

Share: You can copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format

Adapt: You can change, and build upon the material for any purpose, even commercially.

Credit: You must give appropriate credit, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made.

More episodes

Dr Attila Salamon | Dr John Kent – Double-Yolked Eggs: Egg-cellent or Egg-cident?

Dr Attila Salamon | Dr John Kent – Double-Yolked Eggs: Egg-cellent or Egg-cident?

Eggs are marvellous – they contain all the sustenance needed to make a young bird within their protective shell, and when destined for the plate, they are nutritious and delicious. For many of us, cracking open an egg for breakfast to discover two yolks in the pan is a pleasant surprise. However, if eggs are nature’s miracle of packaging, then double-yolked eggs must be nature’s mistake – a mistake that still holds many mysteries. To answer some persisting questions, Dr Attila Salamon and Dr John Kent of University College Dublin examined our collective knowledge on double-yolked eggs in a recent review.

Dr Kahiu Ngugi | Developing Drought and Weed Resistant Super-Sorghum

Dr Kahiu Ngugi | Developing Drought and Weed Resistant Super-Sorghum

Future food security is one of the key global challenges facing society. Climate change presents significant threats to our ability to produce staple food crops – particularly in regions already vulnerable to droughts. Dr Kahiu Ngugi and his research team from the University of Nairobi and other institutions in Kenya investigated numerous varieties of sorghum – one of the world’s most important cereal crops. Their aim was to find new genes that would allow the crop to withstand both drought and a common parasitic weed.

Dr Stefi Baum – Dr Christopher O’Dea | Shaping Galaxy Clusters with Supermassive Black Holes

Dr Stefi Baum – Dr Christopher O’Dea | Shaping Galaxy Clusters with Supermassive Black Holes

The black holes found at the centres of most large galaxies are now found to be fundamental to galactic formation and evolution. Until recently, however, little was understood about how these massive bodies affect the behaviours of their host galaxies and beyond. Through their research, Dr Stefi Baum and Dr Christopher O’Dea at the University of Manitoba have made important strides towards untangling the many mysteries involved in this intriguing astronomical problem.

Dr Robert Bryant – Dr Langdon Martin | Reducing the Carbon Footprint of Cattle Farming with Leftover Brewer’s Yeast

Dr Robert Bryant – Dr Langdon Martin | Reducing the Carbon Footprint of Cattle Farming with Leftover Brewer’s Yeast

Methane is one of the most potent greenhouse gases that contributes to the global climate crisis. As this gas is produced in the digestive systems of cattle, methane represents one of the greatest problems faced by the farming industry. Dr Robert Bryant, Dr Langdon Martin and their team at Warren Wilson College, North Carolina, propose an innovative feed supplement for cattle that helps to significantly reduce methane emissions: waste yeast from craft breweries. If used on a large scale, this new supplement could significantly decrease emissions associated with cattle farming, while also creating a new use for a waste product of the craft beer industry.

Increase the impact of your research

• Good science communication helps people make informed decisions and motivates them to take appropriate and affirmative action.
• Good science communication encourages everyday people to be scientifically literate so that they can analyse the integrity and legitimacy of information.
• Good science communication encourages people into STEM-related fields of study and employment.
• Good public science communication fosters a community around research that includes both members of the public, policymakers and scientists.
• In a recent survey, 75% of people suggested they would prefer to listen to an interesting story than read it.

Step 1 Upload your science paper

Step 2 SciPod script written

Step 3 Voice audio recorded

Step 4 SciPod published