Protocells: Bridging Nonliving and Living Matter - ISBN 0262182688 - MIT Press 2008


  • first pass with titles and conclusions
    • three functional components (Figure I.1 in the Introduction
      courtesy of the FLinT, Center for Fundamental Living Technology, University of Southern Denmark)
      • metabolism
      • container
      • genes
    • virtual models
    • fractal pattern of ontogenic growth
      • 8 - Constructive Approach to Protocells: Theory and Experiments
        • 8.3 Theoretical Issue 2: Origin of Recursive Production and Evolvability
    • seems to have nearly no occurance of "cognition" but plenty of "recognition"
      • probably highlighting the importance of the membrane
        • still key to Stewart's life=cognition (never mentioned in the book)
    • enaction by Varela/Maturana
      • chapters referencing Maturana, H., & Varela, F. (1980). Autopoiesis and cognition: The realization of the living
        • 3 - Semisynthetic Minimal Cells
        • 4 - A Roadmap to Protocells
        • 9 - Origin of Life and Lattice Artificial Chemistry
        • 12 - Evolutionary Microfluidic Complementation Toward Artificial Cells
        • 22 - Gantiís Chemoton Model and Life Criteria
    • 20 - Core Metabolism as a Self-Organized System
      • "Metabolism of protocells should be based on pathways with the lowest thresholds to autocatalysis."
      • "We suggest that the order of life should be understood as a statistical phenomenon, from the smallest to the largest structures, and from the earliest chemical stages to the persistence of modern forms."
    • 21 - Energetics, Energy Flow, and Scaling in Life
      • 21.4 - Energy and Information (p469)
    • 24 - Nonlinear Chemical Dynamics and the Origin of Life
      • Conclusion, 2, "The Darwinian evolution with its exponential growth occurs once one has the capacity for self-catalysis, or perhaps more accurately, self-driven reproduction, with evolution occurring as a result of occasional errors in the self-reproduction process, with the defective product still having the ability to self-reproduce. Competition for resources coupled with the environment itself will, of course, provide the subsequent selection." (p560)

Overall questions and remarks

  • life a self-sustaining process relying on sub-processes and mainly homeostasis

See also


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