Wang, KJ (reprint author), Chinese Acad Sci, Inst High Energy Phys, POb 2732, Beijing 100080, Peoples R China.
In our simulation of the photochemistry of the primitive soup, it was found that yield of chromophore loss of some nucleic acid bases, nucleosides and nucleotides [NA] undergoing ultraviolet radiation by medium pressure mercury lamp [MPML] was enhanced by pyrophosphate and triphosphate whether O-2 is present or not. The yield of chromophore loss of guanosine, uracil, 5' CMP, and the derivatives of adenine and thymine was observed to rise with the increase of molar concentration of pyrophosphate in N-2-saturated systems. In air-saturated samples, increase in yield of chromophore loss was observed when the concentration of pyrophosphate reaches 5x10(-4) M, relative yield of chromophore loss (CLrel) coming to maximum in the range from 0.01 to 0.1 M, followed by a slight decline with the further increase of pyrophosphate concentration. The enhancement of photolysis of NA by pyrophosphate was due to the interaction between NA and pyrophosphate radicals photoionized by UV quanta of wavelength less than about 210 nm in the emission spectrum of a MPML. The relevance of this phenomenon to the origin of life has been discussed as well.