Statistical physics of selfreplication
Abstract
Selfreplication is a capacity common to every species of living thing, and simple physical intuition dictates that such a process must invariably be fueled by the production of entropy. Here, we undertake to make this intuition rigorous and quantitative by deriving a lower bound for the amount of heat that is produced during a process of selfreplication in a system coupled to a thermal bath. We find that the minimum value for the physically allowed rate of heat production is determined by the growth rate, internal entropy, and durability of the replicator, and we discuss the implications of this finding for bacterial cell division, as well as for the prebiotic emergence of selfreplicating nucleic acids.
 Publication:

Journal of Chemical Physics
 Pub Date:
 September 2013
 DOI:
 10.1063/1.4818538
 arXiv:
 arXiv:1209.1179
 Bibcode:
 2013JChPh.139l1923E
 Keywords:

 biothermics;
 cellular biophysics;
 durability;
 entropy;
 microorganisms;
 statistical analysis;
 87.17.Ee;
 87.19.Pp;
 02.50.r;
 Growth and division;
 Biothermics;
 Probability theory stochastic processes and statistics;
 Physics  Biological Physics;
 Condensed Matter  Statistical Mechanics;
 Quantitative Biology  Populations and Evolution
 EPrint:
 4+ pages, 1 figure