Limits...
Life depends upon two kinds of water.

Wiggins P - PLoS ONE (2008)

Bottom Line: Energy transduction is neither possible and nor necessary.Bioactive enantiomorphs partition into low density water in which they polymerise spontaneously.The simplified model of water has great explanatory power.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Mairangi Bay, Auckland, New Zealand. p.wiggins@paradise.net.nz

ABSTRACT

Background: Many well-documented biochemical processes lack a molecular mechanism. Examples are: how ATP hydrolysis and an enzyme contrive to perform work, such as active transport; how peptides are formed from amino acids and DNA from nucleotides; how proteases cleave peptide bonds, how bone mineralses; how enzymes distinguish between sodium and potassium; how chirality of biopolymers was established prebiotically.

Methodology/principal findings: It is shown that involvement of water in all these processes is mandatory, but the water must be of the simplified configuration in which there are only two strengths of water-water hydrogen bonds, and in which these two types of water coexist as microdomains throughout the liquid temperature range. Since they have different strengths of hydrogen bonds, the microdomains differ in all their physical and chemical properties. Solutes partition asymmetrically, generating osmotic pressure gradients which must be compensated for or abolished. Displacement of the equilibrium between high and low density waters incurs a thermodynamic cost which limits solubility, depresses ionisation of water, drives protein folding and prevents high density water from boiling at its intrinsic boiling point which appears to be below 0 degrees C. Active processes in biochemistry take place in sequential partial reactions, most of which release small amounts of free energy as heat. This ensures that the system is never far from equilibrium so that efficiency is extremely high. Energy transduction is neither possible and nor necessary. Chirality was probably established in prebiotic clays which must have carried stable populations of high density and low density water domains. Bioactive enantiomorphs partition into low density water in which they polymerise spontaneously.

Conclusions/significance: The simplified model of water has great explanatory power.

Show MeSH

Related in: MedlinePlus

The positions of the maxima of the OH stretch band in water inside dense cellulose acetate membranes equilibrated with water and various solutions.
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pone-0001406-g002: The positions of the maxima of the OH stretch band in water inside dense cellulose acetate membranes equilibrated with water and various solutions.

Mentions: The OH stretch band of the infrared spectrum of water in dense cellulose acetate membranes soaked in water peaked at 3200 cm−1, the value for ice. (see Figure 2). The height of this peak increased in the presence of the excluded salts and increased with the degree of exclusion. This was all consistent with the presence of LDW inside the pores. The behaviour of the pore water in the presence of KCl and CsCl was the first intimation of oscillations which have been identified in many systems. At extremely low concentrations of KCl and CsCl, the OH stretch band still peaked at 3200 cm−1 and the ions were accumulated, but at the higher concentrations when the ions were not accumulated, the OH stretch band peaked at 3400 cm−1, the value for liquid water. This suggests that the strongly cross-linked matrix of cellulose acetate had very little flexibility and offered great resistance to all but a very slight degree of swelling.


Life depends upon two kinds of water.

Wiggins P - PLoS ONE (2008)

The positions of the maxima of the OH stretch band in water inside dense cellulose acetate membranes equilibrated with water and various solutions.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC2170473&req=5

pone-0001406-g002: The positions of the maxima of the OH stretch band in water inside dense cellulose acetate membranes equilibrated with water and various solutions.
Mentions: The OH stretch band of the infrared spectrum of water in dense cellulose acetate membranes soaked in water peaked at 3200 cm−1, the value for ice. (see Figure 2). The height of this peak increased in the presence of the excluded salts and increased with the degree of exclusion. This was all consistent with the presence of LDW inside the pores. The behaviour of the pore water in the presence of KCl and CsCl was the first intimation of oscillations which have been identified in many systems. At extremely low concentrations of KCl and CsCl, the OH stretch band still peaked at 3200 cm−1 and the ions were accumulated, but at the higher concentrations when the ions were not accumulated, the OH stretch band peaked at 3400 cm−1, the value for liquid water. This suggests that the strongly cross-linked matrix of cellulose acetate had very little flexibility and offered great resistance to all but a very slight degree of swelling.

Bottom Line: Energy transduction is neither possible and nor necessary.Bioactive enantiomorphs partition into low density water in which they polymerise spontaneously.The simplified model of water has great explanatory power.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Mairangi Bay, Auckland, New Zealand. p.wiggins@paradise.net.nz

ABSTRACT

Background: Many well-documented biochemical processes lack a molecular mechanism. Examples are: how ATP hydrolysis and an enzyme contrive to perform work, such as active transport; how peptides are formed from amino acids and DNA from nucleotides; how proteases cleave peptide bonds, how bone mineralses; how enzymes distinguish between sodium and potassium; how chirality of biopolymers was established prebiotically.

Methodology/principal findings: It is shown that involvement of water in all these processes is mandatory, but the water must be of the simplified configuration in which there are only two strengths of water-water hydrogen bonds, and in which these two types of water coexist as microdomains throughout the liquid temperature range. Since they have different strengths of hydrogen bonds, the microdomains differ in all their physical and chemical properties. Solutes partition asymmetrically, generating osmotic pressure gradients which must be compensated for or abolished. Displacement of the equilibrium between high and low density waters incurs a thermodynamic cost which limits solubility, depresses ionisation of water, drives protein folding and prevents high density water from boiling at its intrinsic boiling point which appears to be below 0 degrees C. Active processes in biochemistry take place in sequential partial reactions, most of which release small amounts of free energy as heat. This ensures that the system is never far from equilibrium so that efficiency is extremely high. Energy transduction is neither possible and nor necessary. Chirality was probably established in prebiotic clays which must have carried stable populations of high density and low density water domains. Bioactive enantiomorphs partition into low density water in which they polymerise spontaneously.

Conclusions/significance: The simplified model of water has great explanatory power.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus