The origins of life: Old problems, new chemistries

Stephen Mann*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

113 Citations (Scopus)


Synthetic life: The origin of life on the early Earth, and the ex novo transition of non-living matter to artificial living systems are deep scientific challenges that provide a context for the development of new chemistries with unknown technological consequences. This Essay attempts to re-frame some of the epistemological difficulties associated with these questions into an integrative framework of proto-life science. Chemistry is at the heart of this endeavour.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)155-162
Number of pages8
JournalAngewandte Chemie - International Edition
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jan 2013


  • Origins of life
  • Protocells
  • Soft matter
  • Synthetic life
  • Systems chemistry


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