Science was created in Greece with a significant contribution from Egypt
Oὐδὲν χρῆμα μάτην γίνεται ἀλλα πάντα ἐκ λόγου τε καὶ ὑπ᾽ ἀνάγκης


Metabolism and SARS-CoV-2

Will we reconstruct and synthesize life?

Out of the box questions and some answers

Key functions for life

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Landauer's principle « animates » biological chemistry

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We perceive our world through four categories: space, time, mass and energy. To this list, physics adds information as an essential component. Indeed, information resolves the conflicts between classical and quantum physics. Thus, if only from a heuristic point of view, information is an authentic category of Reality. This implies that the accumulation of information is the result of concrete instantiations, incarnations of those agents that James Clerk Maxwell invented, known today as «Maxwell's demons».

To make this view explicit, we develop here the consequences of the physics principle discovered by Rolf Landauer in 1961, and which took decades to be understood. By reflecting on what common sense calls «information» - with the connotation of what might be «useful» information, or contextually valuable information - Landauer demonstrated that information creation, contrary to popular belief, is reversible. Information creation does not dissipate energy. How Maxwell's demon proceedsWhat is energy-consuming is the process of resetting the agents that create information to their ground state, allowing them to perform their function again. If we see living organisms as computers able to generate computers (or finite Turing Machines, generating finite Turing Machines) we must add to Turing's vision the presence of agents  that drive and control the assembly line of the machine's progeny. These energy dissipating agents are absent from the standard vision of computing. If one then explores the functions of the cell that appear to dissipate energy for no apparent reason, analysis of the genome sequence reveals many genes that code for these functions. This discovery sheds light on the core of what makes biological chemistry seem 'animate', a feature of life that has been elusive until now.

+ Caveat : The epilogue to The Delphic Boat. Harvard University Press, 2003. Scientists should have no name...

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