Mechanisms of Amino Acid Formation in Interstellar Ice Analogs

  • Elsila J
  • Dworkin J
  • Bernstein M
 et al. 
  • 47

    Readers

    Mendeley users who have this article in their library.
  • 107

    Citations

    Citations of this article.

Abstract

Amino acids have been identified in carbonaceous chondrites, but their origin is yet unknown. Previous work has shown that a variety of amino acids can be formed via ultraviolet photolysis of interstellar ice analogs. Two possible mechanisms of formation of these amino acids have been proposed: a Strecker-type synthesis or a radical-radical mechanism. In this work, we have used isotopic labeling techniques to test the predictions made by each of these proposed mechanisms for the formation of the amino acids glycine and serine. We observe that amino acid formation occurs via multiple pathways, with potentially different mechanisms for glycine and serine. The major reaction paths do not match either of the two predicted mechanisms, although a modified radical-radical mechanism may account for our observations. The observation of multiple routes suggests that the formation of amino acids in interstellar ice analogs is not narrowly dependent on ice composition, but may occur under a variety of conditions that influence product distributions.

Get free article suggestions today

Mendeley saves you time finding and organizing research

Sign up here
Already have an account ?Sign in

Find this document

Get full text

Authors

  • Jamie E. Elsila

  • Jason P. Dworkin

  • Max P. Bernstein

  • Mildred P. Martin

  • Scott A. Sandford

Cite this document

Choose a citation style from the tabs below

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free