Rapid Growth and Fusion of Protocells in Surface-Adhered Membrane Networks
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2020

Elevated temperatures might have promoted the nucleation, growth, and replication of protocells on the early Earth. Recent reports have shown evidence that moderately high temperatures not only permit protocell assembly at the origin of life, but can have actively supported it. Here, the fast nucleation and growth of vesicular compartments from autonomously formed lipid networks on solid surfaces, induced by a moderate increase in temperature, are shown. Branches of the networks, initially consisting of self-assembled interconnected nanotubes, rapidly swell into microcompartments which can spontaneously encapsulate RNA fragments. The increase in temperature further causes fusion of adjacent network-connected compartments, resulting in the redistribution of the RNA. The experimental observations and the mathematical model indicate that the presence of nanotubular interconnections between protocells facilitates the fusion process.

lipid nanotubes

origin of life

temperature-induced fusion



Elif Senem Köksal

Universitetet i Oslo

Susanne Liese

Universitetet i Oslo

Lin Xue

Universitetet i Oslo

Ruslan Ryskulov

Chalmers, Kemi och kemiteknik, Kemi och biokemi, Fysikalisk kemi

Lauri Leo Kustaa Viitala

Chalmers, Kemi och kemiteknik, Kemi och biokemi

Andreas Carlson

Universitetet i Oslo

Irep Gözen

Universitetet i Oslo

Chalmers, Kemi och kemiteknik, Kemi och biokemi


1613-6810 (ISSN) 1613-6829 (eISSN)

Vol. 16 38 2002529


Fysikalisk kemi

Annan kemiteknik

Metallurgi och metalliska material



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