On the evolution of the standard amino-acid alphabet
Department of Biological Sciences, University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Baltimore, MD 21250, USA
Genome Biology 2006, 7:102 doi:10.1186/gb-2006-7-1-102Published: 1 February 2006
Although one standard amino-acid 'alphabet' is used by most organisms on Earth, the evolutionary cause(s) and significance of this alphabet remain elusive. Fresh insights into the origin of the alphabet are now emerging from disciplines as diverse as astrobiology, biochemical engineering and bioinformatics.