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Where did cells come from anyway?

What came first—a cell’s insides or its outsides? Did the first cells in Earth’s primordial soup arise when membranes formed and forced the right chemicals together? Or did blobs of chemically active materials later acquire membranes? New research supports the latter by suggesting a mechanism that could have allowed chemically active droplets to replicate, according to Wired. The scientists found that as these droplets collect more material through chemical reactions, they grow and, once they get too big, divide to give rise to two daughter droplets, Nature Physics reports. The process is reminiscent of cell division, but whether this is how cells first came about remains a hotly debated question.