Thursday, October 21, 2010

The First Industrial Revolution Ever and the Origin of Complex Life

« All animals, plants and fungi evolved from one ancestor, the first ever complex, or "eukaryotic", cell. This common ancestor had itself evolved from simple bacteria, but it has long been a mystery why this seems to have happened only once: bacteria, after all, have been around for billions of years.

Cells could not become complex until they could produce sufficient energy. This obstacle was overcome when a cell engulfed some bacteria and started using them as power generators – the first mitochondria.

Once freed from energy restraints, genomes could expand dramatically and cells capable of complex functions – such as communicating with each other and having specialised jobs – could evolve. Complex life was born. »

And, I would add, through specialization, exchange and production. Economics in a word.

A fascinating account of new research perspective by Nick Lane of University College London and Bill Martin of the University of Dusseldorf, in

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