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Issue 30, 2016
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Formation of supramolecular assemblies and liquid crystals by purine nucleobases and cyanuric acid in water: implications for the possible origins of RNA

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Abstract

The free nucleobases and mononucleotides of RNA do not form Watson–Crick base pairs in water, a fact that presents several challenges for the prebiotic synthesis of RNA. 2,6-Diaminopurine and adenosine-5′-monophosphate (AMP) are shown to form supramolecular assemblies with cyanuric acid in water. These assemblies and their propensity to form liquid crystals suggest a possible means by which non-covalent structures might have originally selected the shape of the Watson–Crick base pairs.

Graphical abstract: Formation of supramolecular assemblies and liquid crystals by purine nucleobases and cyanuric acid in water: implications for the possible origins of RNA

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Supplementary files

Article information


Submitted
06 May 2016
Accepted
23 May 2016
First published
24 May 2016

Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2016,18, 20091-20096
Article type
Communication

Formation of supramolecular assemblies and liquid crystals by purine nucleobases and cyanuric acid in water: implications for the possible origins of RNA

C. Li, B. J. Cafferty, S. C. Karunakaran, G. B. Schuster and N. V. Hud, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys., 2016, 18, 20091
DOI: 10.1039/C6CP03047E

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