Organic material in meteorites and the link to the origin of life
Laboratoire de Minéralogie et Cosmochimie du Museum, UMR CNRS 7202, CP52 57 rue Cuvier, 75231 Paris Cedex 05, France
a e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Life requires specific conditions that have been, so far, only proven to meet on Earth. Though the chemical elements required to form living organism (C, H, N, O, S, etc) are widespread in the universe, the molecules that are crucial for Life, like nucleobases or amino acids, may not be so ubiquitous. The question of the formation of small and complex molecules is highly relevant to understand the process of Life origin. Carbonaceous chondrites are a class of meteorites rich in organic compounds and host potential precursors for the emergence of Life (organic matter and water). They could have been the source of complex molecules on the early Earth. This contribution will describe the main properties of the organic matter recovered from carbonaceous chondrites. However, the isotopic and molecular record of organic compounds is faded by secondary processes that occurred on the parent body of these meteorites. This results in complex signatures that raise multiple questions about the origin of organic compounds in the Solar System.
© Owned by the authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2014
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 2.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.