Origin & Evolution of Life

ACEs In Spaces: Autocatalytic Chemical Ecosystems In Spatial Settings

By Keith Cowing
Press Release
January 14, 2023
Filed under , , , ,
ACEs In Spaces: Autocatalytic Chemical Ecosystems In Spatial Settings
Snapshots of the final state of each ACE. Heatmaps of Oi,Hloc,i, and Hnei,i at locations in a hexagonal reaction-diffusion array of diameter 39 for member chemical diffusivity values kD ranging logarithmically from 10βˆ’3 to 1. Each site was seeded with 10 A, 10 B, and 50 F . Each simulation was run to time T = 100 with kAC,A = kAC,B = 0.01,kf = 0.01, kI = 0.02, source food count 50 F , and Ο„-leaping. — q-bio.PE

Autocatalysis is thought to have played an important role in the earliest stages of the origin of life. An autocatalytic cycle’s (AC) constituent chemicals can collectively catalyze their own recreation.

When the reactions of multiple, interacting ACs are active in a region of space, they form an autocatalytic chemical ecosystem (ACE). Previous work demonstrated that, in chemostats, interactions between ACs in ACEs can be framed as analogous to those between species in biological ecosystems.

Here, we extend this framework to investigate the effects of surface adsorption, desorption, and diffusion on ACE ecology. Simulating ACEs as particle-based stochastic reaction-diffusion systems in spatial settings, including open, two-dimensional reaction-diffusion systems and adsorptive mineral surfaces, we demonstrate that spatial structure can support more coexisting ACs and expose new AC traits to selection.

Alex M. Plum, David A. Baum

Subjects: Populations and Evolution (q-bio.PE)
Cite as: arXiv:2212.14445 [q-bio.PE] (or arXiv:2212.14445v1 [q-bio.PE] for this version)
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Submission history
From: Alex Plum
[v1] Thu, 29 Dec 2022 19:53:47 UTC (4,127 KB)

Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA Space Station Payload manager/space biologist, Away Teams, Journalist, Lapsed climber, Synaesthete, Na’Vi-Jedi-Freman-Buddhist-mix, ASL, Devon Island and Everest Base Camp veteran, (he/him) πŸ––πŸ»