Organic Ice Makes Amino Acids

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Organic ice experiment makes amino acids, as described in Nature, vol 416, 28 March 2002. Ever since carbon containing molecules were discovered in interstellar space and amino acids were found in meteorites some scientists have believed that life evolved from organic molecules delivered to earth from outer space. Scientists at the Sackler Laboratory for Astrophysics, Leiden (Germany) and Centre Biophysique Moleculaire, Orleans (France) placed ice crystals containing simple molecules such as carbon dioxide, ammonia and methanol into a vacuum and irradiated them with ultra-violet light to see if organic molecules could be formed in an environment like that in outer space. They produced 28 different organic molecules including four amino acids that are found in living cells.

Editorial Comment: This experiment is no better at explaining the origin of life than the original "organic soup" experiments carried out by Stanley Miller almost 50 years ago. It simply proves is that organic chemists can make organic molecules, but the fatal flaw in this experiment is the same as in Miller's original experiment. The amino acids they made were a mixture of right and left "handed" forms. Amino acids come in two forms that are chemically the same but have slightly different shapes, just like your two hands. Amino acids in living things are all left handed. The chemists who did this experiment were able to separate the two forms but that proves it takes an outside pre-existent intelligent designer to produce pure left (or right handed) molecules. (Ref. amino acids, origin of life, space)

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