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The Vital Question: Energy, Evolution, and the Origins of Complex Life #2020

The Vital Question Energy Evolution and the Origins of Complex Life To explain the mystery of how life evolved on Earth Nick Lane explores the deep link between energy and genes The Earth teems with life in its oceans forests skies and cities Yet there s a black ho

  • Title: The Vital Question: Energy, Evolution, and the Origins of Complex Life
  • Author: Nick Lane
  • ISBN: 9780393088816
  • Page: 189
  • Format: Hardcover
  • The Vital Question: Energy, Evolution, and the Origins of Complex Life By Nick Lane, To explain the mystery of how life evolved on Earth, Nick Lane explores the deep link between energy and genes.The Earth teems with life in its oceans, forests, skies and cities Yet there s a black hole at the heart of biology We do not know why complex life is the way it is, or, for that matter, how life first began In The Vital Question, award winning author and biocTo explain the mystery of how life evolved on Earth, Nick Lane explores the deep link between energy and genes.The Earth teems with life in its oceans, forests, skies and cities Yet there s a black hole at the heart of biology We do not know why complex life is the way it is, or, for that matter, how life first began In The Vital Question, award winning author and biochemist Nick Lane radically reframes evolutionary history, putting forward a solution to conundrums that have puzzled generations of scientists.For two and a half billion years, from the very origins of life, single celled organisms such as bacteria evolved without changing their basic form Then, on just one occasion in four billion years, they made the jump to complexity All complex life, from mushrooms to man, shares puzzling features, such as sex, which are unknown in bacteria How and why did this radical transformation happen The answer, Lane argues, lies in energy all life on Earth lives off a voltage with the strength of a lightning bolt Building on the pillars of evolutionary theory, Lane s hypothesis draws on cutting edge research into the link between energy and cell biology, in order to deliver a compelling account of evolution from the very origins of life to the emergence of multicellular organisms, while offering deep insights into our own lives and deaths.Both rigorous and enchanting, The Vital Question provides a solution to life s vital question why are we as we are, and indeed, why are we here at all

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    1 thought on “The Vital Question: Energy, Evolution, and the Origins of Complex Life

    1. This is a bravura, hit you between the eyes popular science book which, were it not for a couple of failings, would not only be five star, but quite possibly the best popular science book of the year so far.Nick Lane succeeds on two levels One is opening the eyes of a relatively ignorant reader on the subject of biology like me to the sheer, magnificent complexity of biological mechanisms I was aware, for instance, of mitochondria as the power sources of eukaryotic cells, but hadn t a clue just [...]

    2. I learned a lot from this book, and unlearned some old things about biology and biochemistry Here s some notes I took about the book, to save on my computer 0s Nick Lane The Vital Question1 Endosymbiosis was a one off between an archaeon body and a bacterium that became mitochondrium Golgi bodies may or may not have invaded later other subbodies were likely produced by internal action, tho Lane doesn t specify.2 Archaea and bacteria didn t diversify at black smoker vents on seafloor ridges, but [...]

    3. Until now, Nick Lane has been my favorite author Increasingly, or at least in my estimation, he is joining the ranks of the old science guard who work hard to a politicize science and b make important science inaccessible to the non scientific, but intelligent and curious, reader If his discussion of Margulis had been half as balanced as the male scientists he discussed, who also got a few things right and a few thing very wrong, chapter one would have been tolerable Francis Crick believed that [...]

    4. Wow this book was so interesting, it s main goal is to put forward the theory that the ability to harness energy by single cell organisms was the leap that was necessary for said organism to evolve into complex organisms and therefore us, it explains the processes by which this could be possible attained 4 billion years ago, it argues that achieving this feat was nothing short of a miracle that it s very likely to not happen again It also predicts that life in other planets would be similar to [...]

    5. Have you ever wondered what life is Not in the philosophical complexity of how hard it is to lead one, but what actually defines life in a scientific sense Ever tried to comprehend the complexity of living, wondered on what makes life , what concept or part it is that makes you say an organism is alive or dead In the general sense, if you stop breathing, you are considered dead Okay, you breathe, you walk, you talk But what is it that makes you breathe autonomously in the first place If you have [...]

    6. A compelling theory of the origin of life and its progression to complexity, built from first principles and intimately linked with energy.I found a glowing mention of this book at the end of Bill Gates Best Books of 2015 blogpost and immediately bought it after reading the intriguing premise If you liked The Selfish Gene and are ready for a challenging book, I highly recommend this one.Prerequisites basic understanding of cell biology and a bit of chemistry Some familiarity with the concept of [...]

    7. A gorgeous book, so clear and well written Worth reading for the description of the ATP synthase alone I wish science writing this good had been around when I was at high school If you re considering reading it, basically it s about the importance of mitochondria Lane s ideas got super fascinating in chapter 9, and if you don t currently have time to read all 305 pages of Lane s book, and you know a little about cell biology already, I rec picking up the book just to read this chapter alone And [...]

    8. Best argument for evolution thus farReading this book made me feel like am back in my high school biology class The subject matter is much complicated but extremely meaningful in pondering the great questions of origin of complex life.Nick Lane has managed to construct a brilliant argument that us laymen could follow and reason out His central ideas around endosymbiosis, ATP synthesis, Redox Reactions, Chemiosmotic Hypothesis, Apoptosis and free radical leak provide clear cut evolutionary logic [...]

    9. This is the book I ve been waiting for So many discussions theological and biological jump immediately to the conundrum of abiogenesis It s a particularly difficult problem, with the origins of life shrouded in the ancient past, and a good deal of complexity to be conjured from natural processes alone Enter Nick Lane, a biochemist in the Department of Genetics, Evolution and Environment at University College London, leader of their Origins of Life Program Lane tackles numerous features of life i [...]

    10. You remember that teacher you had, in junior high or high school, who was so enthusiastic about his or her topic that you found yourself enjoying the class Even if it was in a field you had not liked up until then, the right person can have a level of excitement with a subject that is contagious Nothing is boring than someone who is bored, and very little is as exciting as someone who is excited about what they re trying to teach Reading Nick Lane s book is a little like having a teacher like t [...]

    11. THE VITAL QUESTION Energy, Evolution, and the Origins of Complex Life 2015 Nick LaneThe field of molecular biology evolved in the late 1960s By that time, I had graduated from college with a MS in Chemistry, and was working in the field of colloid and surface chemistry I had no formal training in any of the science being developed related to cell chemistry I was also trying to catch up with what had been happening in my field of specialization When I encountered this book and others of its type [...]

    12. If you have a solid grounding in science already, particularly biology, this is probably going to be accessible for you but if not, you might struggle a little It starts off alright, but it gets quite dense in places, and if you re not super interested, you ll probably get bogged down That said, to me it was fascinating, and generated testable hypotheses about how early life could have functioned.I still disagree with Nick Lane on some points, like the dismissiveness with which he treats junk DN [...]

    13. 41st book for 2017.This is definitely one of the most interesting science books I have read Nick Lane who comes across as a kind of genius puts forward his ideas about how the archaea and bacteria originated and are related, how complexity started in eukaryotes, why bacteria archaea never became complex, how the sex and death originated, and to finish throws in some speculations about where and how life will evolve in the universe.

    14. Can a book be both dry and riveting Yes, it can Although Nick Lane does not always succeed in his ambition to do better than textbook style writing, this challenging and exhausting book rewards the reader with an up to date understanding of the evolved nanotechnology we call life This isn t a book about cool animals, or about evolution as a whole Lane focuses very much on life at the very small scale, such as the inner workings of mitochondria, the power houses of the cell It s an understanding [...]

    15. Extremely interesting, and challenging read Can you look at evolution not through the lens of population genetics but through the lens of biochemistry, specifically, energy Lane starts at the beginning how come the last common eukaryotic ancestor already possessed so many complicated traits He goes to introduce an origin of life that depends on energy in the form of protein gradients, and argues that life depending on protein gradients can only evolve under very constrained circumstances therefo [...]

    16. If comes to life the thinker can t avoid Schr dinger s.t his cat,but his book What is life By him life is the only that can defy II Law Forty years ago,at the dawn of molecular biology, French Monod wrote his famous book Chance and Necessity , which argues that the origin of life on earth was a freak accident.Life,as Hungarian biochemist Albert Szent Gy rgyi observed,is nothing but an electron looking for a place to rest It was a fascinating sensation to delve into the cell biology again, and mo [...]

    17. Nick Lane goes on an exploratory adventure to understand the life biologically, that is, as it has come to be There are many familiar conjecture he arrives at that sounds plausible with the information that is available today He makes no great leaps in theories that borderlines on miraculous thus keeping the conversation very well within the boundaries of science Lane s hypothesis are derived out of years of observations, cross discipline research and fundamentals of biology It is humbling to re [...]

    18. An impressive book Nick Lane has taken years of highly original research and deduction on the origins and evolution of life on Earth, the product of which is distilled into this relatively concise book The result is challenging but enlightening.Although admirably written for a general audience, Lane s ideas are dumbed down as little as necessary and I must admit as someone with very little formal education in Biology or Chemistry that I did end up feeling quite lost at times amongst the technica [...]

    19. This is hugely rewarding reading and a remarkable thesis for the origin of LUCA Last Universal Common Ancestor of all cells on Earth His assertion that alkali vents on the sea floor, miles from the smoker thermal vents, as the likely candidate for the first prokaryotic endosymbiosis event is a bold claim and an endlessly fascinating story, highly recommended Lane gives a staggering amount of detail as well as an interesting narrative that incorporates the processing of energy in early lifeforms [...]

    20. What an exciting, fascinating and absorbing book this is At last we have a coherent account of how life could evolve and make the difficult move into multi organ cells and multi cellular creatures At last we have a coherent description of what life actually is Bravo Nick Best science book I ve read this year make that last 5 years.

    21. Gostei bastante, uma discuss o bem atual bem completa sobre o que leva forma o de c lulas complexas Mas tendo lido h pouco tempo o Sex, Power, Suicide, do mesmo autor, boa parte do livro fica redundante Recomendo esse direto e desisti de ler o Oxygen dele, j que o mais antigo e tb um tanto redundante.

    22. Covers the story of life from origins up to multicellular creatures with a focus on biochemistry and cell biology Not bad Lots of questions to be answered in this field but we are learning new things all the time.

    23. This vital book filled in a huge gap in my understanding of the origins of life I, like most folks, learned about the what and how of cells but never about where they came from The soup of life, poof out of air explanation was inferred Understandably, we likely didn t focus on cellular origins in school because we don t have many definitive answers There are some speculative elements in this book, but that s an inevitable by product of trying to piece together 4 billion years of history.The most [...]

    24. Intriguing new ideas about the origin of complex life, explaining why we are so similar to mushrooms Would be five star, but unfortunately the author sometimes plunges into deep technical ponds.

    25. I absolutelly enjoyed reading this book.Usually, I feel very interested and curious about biology in general, and this work satisfied me I m not an expert in either biology or literature, but I enjoy writing these reviews.In this book Nick Lane shows an original point of view of biology Instead of just seeing it from the perspective of the genes, the information, he proposes adding another crucial factor to the equation, energy Seeing life as the continuation of a spark quite literally that foll [...]

    26. This is a book with groundbreaking ideas and hypotheses directed forward with a view to solving some of the key questions of Biology You will get answers to some cool questions like Why do Eukaryotes have a nucleus but not prokaryotes Why do Bacteria always remain bacteria Who was LUCA How did Life emerge on earth How reliable is the phylogenetic tree etc If you are a student of Biological Science, this book is a must read for you.This is a pure science book that heavily deals with Evolution, Me [...]

    27. This book details important concepts around cell evolution addressing the most important question of all how did complex life evolve There are detailed discussions around why it is difficult, how it could have happened, what constraints had to be overcome and will life fare similarly in the rest of the universe These are important questions and make for fascinating reading The material is obviously top notch and also authoritative, and while it aims to be a book which everyone can read it does n [...]

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