The chemical origins of life

Scientists discover new clue to the chemical origins of life - Organic chemists at the University of York have made a significant advance towards establishing the origin of the carbohydrates (sugars) that form the building blocks of life. A team led by Dr Paul Clarke in the Department of Chemistry at York have re-created a process which could have occurred in the prebiotic world. Working with colleagues at the University of Nottingham, they have made the first step towards showing how simple sugars –threose and erythrose—developed. The research is published in Organic & Biomolecular Chemistry.