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Chemical Evolution from Hydrogen Cyanide: Photochemical Decarboxylation of Orotic Acid and Orotate Derivatives

J. P. Ferris and P. C. Joshi
Science
New Series, Vol. 201, No. 4353 (Jul. 28, 1978), pp. 361-362
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1746876
Page Count: 2
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Abstract

Irradiation of solutions at pH 7 to pH 8.5 of orotic acid, orotidine, and orotidine 5′-phosphate with light at 254 nanometers yields the corresponding uracil derivative via the singlet excited state. This reaction completes a plausible prebiotic synthesis of uracil and its derivatives starting from HCN as the only carbon source.

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