The Gene Emergence Project
is one of the programs of The Origin-of-Life Science Foundation, Inc., a 501(c)3 science and education foundation with corporate headquarters near NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center just off the Washington, D. C. Beltway in Greenbelt, MD. 113 Hedgewood Drive, 20770-1610 Fax 301-441-8135
The Origin-of-Life Science Foundation should not be confused with "creation science"or "intelligent design" groups. It has no religious affiliations of any kind, nor are we connected in any way with any New Age, Gaia, or "Science and Spirit" groups. The Origin-of-Life Science Foundation, Inc. is a science and education foundation encouraging the pursuit of natural-process explanations and mechanisms within nature. The Foundation's main thrust is to encourage interdisciplinary, multi-institutional research projects by theoretical biophysicists and origin-of-life researchers specifically into the origin of genetic information/instructions/message/recipe in living organisms. By what mechanism did initial genetic code arise in nature? The primary interest of The Gene Emergence Project is to investigate the derivation of functional monomeric sequencing at the rigid covalent-bond level. This must occur prior to any selection for phenotypic fitness.
Fitting with the project's highly interdisciplinary nature, its advisors include biochemists, molecular biologists, biophysicists, information theorists, artificial life and intelligence experts, exo/astrobiologists, mathemeticians, and origin-of-life researchers in many related fields. Please feel free to e-mail or write us opinions, advice, and critiques, particularly of the tentative rules themselves. We are developing as broad and as deep a root system within the scientific community as possible.
The Foundation believes that advisors' personal metaphysical persuasions are none of our business. Science is about "How?" Questions addressing "How?" are about mechanism. As a science foundation, we are interested in models of mechanism consistent with naturally-occuring biochemical phenomena and sound information theory. We welcome as advisors competent scientists from widely respected universities and laboratories around the world whose interest and experience extends to origin-of-life queries.
The Foundation welcomes tax-deductible donations to be used for the promotion of scientific inquiry into the origin of genetic prescriptive information (instruction).
The Fundamental Questions for Life Origin Research -
- How did molecular evolution generate metabolic recipe and instructions using a representational symbol system?
- How did prebiotic nature set all of the many configurable switch-settings to integrate so many interdependent circuits?
- How did inanimate nature sequence nucleotides to spell instructions to the ribosomes on how to sequence amino acids into correctly folding proteins?
- How did nature then code these instructions into Hamming block codes to reduce noise pollution in the Shannon channel?
- What programmed the error-detection and error-correcting software that keeps life from quickly deteriorating into non-life?
- In short, which of the four known forces of physics organized and prescribed life into existence? Was it gravity? Was it the strong or weak nuclear force? Was it the electromagnetic force? How could any combination of these natural forces or force fields program decision nodes to prescribe future utility?
- Why and how would a prebiotic environment value, desire or seek to generate utility?
- Can chance and/or necessity program or prescribe sophisticated biofunction?
- Life is utterly dependent upon the steering of reaction sequences into biochemical pathways and cycles.
- Life pursues the goal of staying alive. All known life is cybernetic, meaning controlled. Life's most prominent attribute is programming and tight regulation at every turn. Yet programming, prescription, control and regulation are all formalisms, not mere physicodynamic interactions. The programming of life is what makes life unique [1-3]
- Metabolism First models cannot sustain themselves as perpetual motion machines, even in open environments, without heritable formal instructions needed to circumvent locally and temporarily 2nd Law organizational and useful energy deterioration.
- Prescription and programming arise only out of Decision Theory, not Stochastic Theory.
- How did prebiotic nature program the first decision nodes? Only Choice-Contingent Causation and Control (CCCC) could possibly program a genome and epigenome.
The peer-reviewed literature referenced in this website provides valuable background information showing why life-origin theorists struggle to generate a model or theory that addresses any of the most important questions of life origin.
An additional book of interest is: Programming of Life
, by Johnson, D.E., Big Mac Publishers: Sylacauga, Alabama, 2010; p 127.