The building block of RNA in the center of the Milky Way

Analyzing data collected by two Spanish telescopes, an international team of researchers detected nitril in the molecular cloud G + 0.693-0.027 near the center of the Milky Way. These organic molecules, the components of the RNA molecule, will be abundant in the universe.

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Characterized by the presence of a cyano group – a Atom Of Carbon An atom is bound by a triple bondNitrogen -, belongs to the nitril family Molecules Important for life. Combined with a Phosphate group And to one Ribose (Sugar), These molecules form Nucleotide Its molecular componentsRNA. LawRNA – I ‘Acid ribonucleic – present in almost all living things and performs many functions, in particular Metabolism Cellular.

The brick of life in interstellar space?

In a new study, an international team of researchers analyzed Spectrum Electromagnetic collected by two Telescope Spanish, when they observe Molecular clouds G + 0.693-0.027, located near the center The Milky Way. And their discovery is rather exciting. In everyone Chemical species They have identified specific nitrils, never discovered before. Not currentlyStar Which forms in this Clouds Molecular – Nebula Interstellar allows sufficiently dense formationHydrogen Molecular – but scientists believe it could become a star nursery in the future. Its structure, which seems to resemble some of our objects The solar system (Like Comet) As well as some of our other star-forming regions GalaxyMakes its study relevant for understanding Pre-solar nebula.

Is there a lot of material in the universe?

However, this is not the first time that such molecules have been observedInterstellar spaceSince they were identified in 2019 in the TMC-1 molecular cloud Taurus. Thus, in a combination of observations made over the past few years, scientists believe that the nitrile family is one of the most abundant in the world.The world. They are found in molecular clouds, in Proto-starComets, or even inAtmosphere Of TitanIts satellites Sat.. Such a conclusion may be in favor of the “RNA World” hypothesis that RNA is the forerunner of all living molecules, includingDNA And Protein. According to this conjecture, RNA material arrived on Earth thanks to bases Meteor And comets, and not necessarily formed on site: we now know that they can form in interstellar space, especially in molecular clouds.

But scientists are interested in being rational. Although this discovery was thrilling, the presence of life on earth required a variety of other elements, e.g. LipidsNecessary for cell formation, thus pointing to the need to focus on how they can form from the common precursor of interstellar space.

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