B8: Biomolecular condensates for early biology (Henrike Niederholtmeyer)
Biomolecular condensates or coacervates locally concentrate molecules. They assemble from prebiotically plausible building blocks such as RNA and peptides by phase separation driven by multivalent interactions between molecules. Thus, catalytically active molecules such as ribozymes can be locally enriched in compartments that obtain substrates for growth and synthesis of more complex molecules from the environment. This project investigates the evolution of active RNA-peptide condensates under continuous or cycling long-term supply of substrates in microfluidic devices.