Paper abstract

Conditions for evolvability of autocatalytic sets: A formal example and analysis

Wim Hordijk and Mike Steel

Origins of Life and Evolution of Biospheres 44(2):111-124, 2014.

We provide a formal but visually clear example of how a set of minimal necessary conditions for evolvability of autocatalytic sets is satisfied in a simple model of chemical reaction systems. Furthermore, we show how these conditions can be captured and analyzed with RAF theory, and how the results can be generalized with a somewhat more elaborate example. Finally, we argue that our results clearly support the hypothesis that autocatalytic sets can be evolvable, and that this might even be an expected property of such sets.