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2011-03-23
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Miller Urey Experiment Returns

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Tagged As: Experiment and Science

The famous Miller Urey experiment from the 1950's were designed to see if organic compounds could be synthesized by simulating a primordial Earth environment. While they did produce amino acids from nothing but base molecules and jolts of electricity, the study has its doubters as in many cases the results were not entirely replicable. Nonetheless, the experiment continues to stimulate thinking about the origin of man whether from compounds native to Earth in prebiotic times or whether they were introduced extra-terrestrially. However, a new twist has recently unveiled itself - the original organic compounds from the half-century old experiment were never disposed of, rather, they were merely stored away. Using modern equipment, organic chemists from the Carnegie Institution for Science in Washington, D.C. have identified additional building block compounds that were undetected in Miller's time as well as determining the original quantities were low - i.e. the Miller Urey experiment was more successful that they believed.



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