Hierarchical thermodynamics solves the puzzle of life

The role of catalysis



The principle of substance stability is the driving force of the origin of life and its evolution. This principle acts at all hierarchical levels of chemical and biological systems. Principle causes the appearance and transformation cycles of energy and matter at all levels of hierarchical thermodynamic complex systems.

Biological systems are complex thermodynamic systems, i.e. systems in which (or on which) is performed not only the work of expansion, but all possible types of work. The behavior of these systems is described by a generalized Gibbs equation, which takes into account the action of the first and second laws of thermodynamics.

The quasi-equilibrium thermodynamics of complex systems acts in the condition of our planet now and as before, during the origin of life. During the origin of life the hierarchical thermodynamics was controlled by the principle of substance stability: slowly, step by step, the principle of substance stability has created new structures of the higher hierarchies. These processes, like the processes of phase formation in the near-equilibrium systems, proceeded very slowly. However, during the evolution, the thermodynamics has found catalyst systems which accelerated the process of formation of higher hierarchical structures. Thus, processes of reproduction of abiotic and living systems were accelerated and were transformed.

From the position of thermodynamics, evolution, phylogeny and ontogeny are processes of self-assembly, transformation and perfection of complex hierarchical systems. These processes are accelerated in the course of evolution, thanks to the development and perfection of catalytic systems. Catalysis has played an important role in creating diverse forms of modern life.

Thus, in the conditions of a young earth due to the absence of active catalysis, modern forms of life cannot exist. However, nowadays it has become possible thanks to the emergence of effective catalysis. At the same time, in the past, and as today “the same thermodynamics” works. In the past, the formation of living systems, as a result of action of cycles of matter and energy at all hierarchical levels, was slow, but in our time the formation of living systems (organisms) are rapid.

It should be borne in mind that the environment on the planet (physical thermostat) was often changed dramatically worldwide as a result of revolutionary changes. Now, however, such transformations are observed only in certain regions of the earth.

Our presented statements indicate to the difficulty of creating life in the lab.

To estimate the presented ideas it useful to study some articles and monographs. Many of these works are on the Internet.


1. Gladyshev G.P. On the Thermodynamics of Biological Evolution // Journal of Theoretical Biology.- 1978.- Vol. 75.- Issue 4.- Dec 21.-P. 425-441.

2. Gladyshev Georgi P. Thermodynamics Theory of the Evolution of Living Beings.- Commack, New York: Nova Science Publishers, Inc.- 1997.- 142 P.

3. Gladyshev, G.P. (1999). “Thermodynamics, Entropy and Evolution of Biological Systems: What Is Life from a Physical Chemist’s Viewpoint.”Entropy 1999, 1[2], 9-20

4. Gladyshev G.P. Supramolecular thermodynamics is a key to understanding phenomenon of life. What is Life from a Physical Chemist’s Viewpoint.- Second Ed., Regular and Chaotic Dynamics.- Moscow-Izhevsk.- 2003.- 144 P. (In Russian).

5. Georgi P. Gladyshev. The Principle of Substance Stability Is Applicable to All Levels of Organization of Living Matter.Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2006, 7, 98-110.http://www.mdpi.org/ijms/papers/i7030098.pdf

6. Georgi P. Gladyshev. Thermodynamic optimizes physiology of life http://ru.scribd.com/doc/87069230/Report-Ok-16-11-2011

Some links can be found at:

http://www.statemaster.com/encyclopedia/Georgi-Pavlovich-Gladyshev http://creatacad.org/?id=48&lng=eng https://gladyshevevolution.wordpress.com/ http://endeav.net/news.html

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