New publication

Our second paper on the chemical origins of life is published in Nature Ecology & Evolution. We show that metallic iron powder fixes carbon dioxide as acetate and pyruvate much like the Acetyl CoA pathway, an ancient biological pathway used by microbes to build themselves. It represents a rare “chemistry-up” experiment that connects with the current “biology-down” understanding of early life. Congrats to Sreejith, Kamila and Paul! Free read-only version here. Paywall version here. Also check out the accompanying Behind the Paper post here.

WL graphic cropped

Paul, Florent and Shaofei join the group

The fourth incoming class of PhD students joins the group. Paul Chatelain (MRT fellowship) returned this October to continue his MSc work on protometabolism. Florent Noel (Région Alsace fellowship) and Shaofei Zhang (CSC fellowship) arrived in November to initiate a new project on directed Brønsted acid catalysis. A warm welcome to all three!

Paul wins an MRT fellowship

Congrats to M2 student Paul Chatelain, who has won a PhD fellowship from the French Ministry of Education. Paul will stay in our group for his PhD studies, which officially begin in October 2017.