K.V. Bukhryakov, S. Almahdali, V.O. Rodionov
Langmuir, 31 (10), 2931-2935, (2015)
We describe a system in which the self-replication of micellar
aggregates results in a spontaneous amplification of chirality in the
reaction products. In this system, amphiphiles are synthesized from two
“clickable” fragments: a water-soluble “head” and a hydrophobic “tail”.
Under biphasic conditions, the reaction is autocatalytic, as aggregates
facilitate the transfer of hydrophobic molecules to the aqueous phase.
When chiral, partially enantioenriched surfactant heads are used, a
strong nonlinear induction of chirality in the reaction products is
observed. Preseeding the reaction mixture with an amphiphile of one
chirality results in the amplification of this product and therefore
information transfer between generations of self-replicating aggregates.
Because our amphiphiles are capable of catalysis, information transfer,
and self-assembly into bounded structures, they present a plausible
model for prenucleic acid “lipid world” entities.