Formation of Amino Acids on the Sonolysis of Aqueous Solutions Containing Acetic Acid, Methane, or Carbon Dioxide, in the Presence of Nitrogen Gas
Leena Dharmarathne, Franz Grieser
JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL CHEMISTRY A | AMER CHEMICAL SOC | Published : 2016
The sonolysis of aqueous solutions containing acetic acid, methane, or carbon dioxide in the presence of nitrogen gas was found to produce a number of different amino acids at a rate of ∼1 to 100 nM/min, using ultrasound at an operating power of 70 W and 355 kHz. Gas-phase elementary reactions are suggested, and discussed, to account for the formation of the complex biomolecules from the low molar mass solutes used. On the basis of the results, a new hypothesis is presented to explain the formation of amino acids under primitive atmospheric conditions and how their formation may be linked to the eventual abiotic genesis of life on Earth.
We are very appreciative of Mrs. S. S. Volaric for her assistance with the MS operation and analysis training and her thoughtful suggestions over the period of the experiments. We also thank our colleagues, R. O'Hair, R. Tabor, and T. W. Healy, for their useful comments and helpful suggestions over the course of this work. This work has been supported by an Australian Research Council grant to F.G.