That would be plausible, if such a small RNA is capable of replication to begin with, which is something I don't know.Originally Posted by bandwagon
Hm. If that is so, it would make sense. But (and I'm making an educated guess here), I believe any such stability is on such a small scale that it is completely overwhelmed by much larger forces which tend to randomize any chiral molecules. I seem to recall that it has something to do with the weak atomic force, which is, after all, called the weak force for good reason. I believe I have read that even completely homochiral molecules have a tendency to racemize over time, which seems like it would rule the possibility of long term homochiral selection out. At least in the vast majority of molecules. The discoveries regarding serine octamers makes it plausible to me that there are other compounds out there with stereoselective properties. I wonder if there are any people playing with serine to try to make optically pure compounds?Yes, they would need to be homochiral to begin with. Well, isn't polymerisation with homochiral nucleotides slightly more stable*, so there is a greater chance over time that the "mother" RNA, the one that first started replicating and progressed, would have been homochiral. Under critical conditions even a slight difference in stability would cause a threshold effect, leading to a dominance of homochiral RNA.
*I have only a vague memory of that and could be wrong. Let me find some info.
On another note, are you aware of any ribozymes that are able to replicate segments without using activated ribonucleotides? Activated nucleotides are bonded to high energy ATP molecules by kinase enzymes, providing the needed oomph to get the replication reaction going. Just another question I have about the whole idea, wondered if you could shed any light on it.