Dictionary of Arguments

Philosophical and Scientific Issues in Dispute

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The author or concept searched is found in the following controversies.
Disputed term/author/ism Author Vs Author
Kauffman, St. Verschiedene Vs Kauffman, St. Kauffman I 94
Life/Catalysis/Kauffman: we want to determine the conditions under which the same molecules act as catalysts and products at the same time. We know that proteins and RNA molecules play this role. In addition, all types of organic molecules can be substrates and products of reactions, while at the same time being catalysts for other reactions.
Now we need to know which molecules catalyse which reactions. We only have assumptions here.
Vs: but you have to know about it to be sure that a molecule system contains an autocatalytic formation. If the general conditions were slightly different, there would be no life.
I 97
KauffmanVsVs: Thesis: perhaps these details of chemistry do not play a role at all! The legality of life lies on an even deeper level. This emergence is directly rooted in mathematics itself.
Kauffman I 104
VsKauffman: it could be argued that what is true for As and Bs is not considered necessary for atoms and molecules. Problem: to produce large polymers energy is required because the thermodynamics favors their splitting into smaller groups. E.g. peptide bond. (100 amino acids) during the bond, a water molecule is released, vice versa consumed during the splitting. Thus, water itself is product of the reaction. (Water > Life).
In a normal aqueous environment the ratio of split to bound amino acid pairs is about 10 : 1.
I 105
For tri or tetrapeptides, the ratio increases to 100 : 1 or 1000 : 1. Rule: If the length of a polymer increases by one amino acid, its equilibrium concentration decreases by a factor of 10 in relation to the free amino acids. How can high concentrations of such molecules be achieved against this trend?
Life/Catalysis/Kauffman: there are at least three basic mechanisms:
1. Reactions can be limited to surfaces instead of taking place in a volume. This favors the formation of larger molecules, because the speed of the reaction depends on how fast the partners meet each other.
2. Dehydration. if the water molecules are removed, the reaction is slower.
I 108
Life/Kauffman: Thesis: Simple systems do not achieve catalytic isolation. Life came into being in one piece and not in successive steps, and it has retained this holistic character to this day.

Kau II
Stuart Kauffman
At Home in the Universe: The Search for the Laws of Self-Organization and Complexity New York 1995

Kauffman I
St. Kauffman
At Home in the Universe, New York 1995
German Edition:
Der Öltropfen im Wasser. Chaos, Komplexität, Selbstorganisation in Natur und Gesellschaft München 1998