RNA World Hypothesis

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A conceptual era in Earth’s early evolution in which life began as biologically active, self-replicating molecules—catalytic RNA—that were later assisted by crude polypeptides See Primordial soup, Urkingdom
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The RNA world hypothesis is extremely unlikely," said Carter.
9) According to the RNA World Hypothesis, the first living system was a polymer(s) of catalytic RNA capable of self-replication that subsequently evolved the ability to encode more versatile peptide catalysts.
Fans of the RNA world hypothesis, a scenario in which life began with RNA and later added DNA and proteins to its repertoire, are therefore seeking to create self-replicating RNA molecules to mirror those with which life on Earth might have originated.