Antonio Lazcano Araujo, professor of UNAM's School of Sciences, was selected for a 2009-2010 UC MEXUS-CONACYT Visiting Scholar fellowship at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego. During his six-month stay at the laboratory of Professor Jeffrey Bada, Lazcano Araujo conducted research on the chemical synthesis of organic compounds under primitive Earth conditions, as part of an ongoing project to understand prebiotic evolution and the conditions leading to the origin of life on our planet. Seeking to close the gap between prebiotic organic syntheses and the initial stages of biological evolution, he also critically analyzed models of the development of metabolic pathways in early diverging microbes using available genomic databases. Lazcano Araujo also contributed "The Origin and Early Evolution of Life: Did It All Start in Darwin's Warm Little Pond?" to Evolution Since Darwin and published "Historical Development of Origins Research" in Cold Spring Harbor Perspectives in Biology: The Origins of Life. Additional outcomes of this stay included a paper on the risks posed by U.S. creationist groups to Mexican science education as well as the manuscript of the book La Tumba de Darwin. Antonio Lazcano Araujo can be reached at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Facultad de Ciencias, and at firstname.lastname@example.org.
(Photo displayed on the UC MEXUS home page, Antonio Lazcano Araujo in the Galapagos Islands)