A missing pathway from inorganic to pre-biotic discovered. (Paper here):

Peptides, one of the fundamental building blocks of life, can be formed from the primitive precursors of amino acids under conditions similar to those expected on the primordial Earth, finds a new study.
From the press release:
Origin of life insight: Peptides can form without amino acids, Nature, July 10, 2019
"Many researchers have sought to understand how peptides first formed to help life develop, but almost all of the research has focused on amino acids, so the reactivity of their precursors was overlooked," said Dr Powner.

The precursors, aminonitriles, require harsh conditions, typically strongly acidic or alkaline, to form amino acids. And then amino acids must be recharged with energy to make peptides. The researchers found a way to bypass both of these steps, making peptides directly from energy-rich aminonitriles.

They found that aminonitriles have the innate reactivity to achieve peptide bond formation in water with greater ease than amino acids. The team identified a sequence of simple reactions, combining hydrogen sulfide with aminonitriles and another chemical substrate ferricyanide, to yield peptides.

"Controlled synthesis, in response to environmental or internal stimuli, is an essential element of metabolic regulation, so we think that peptide synthesis could have been part of a natural cycle that took place in the very early evolution of life," said Pierre Canavelli, the first author of the study who completed it while at UCL.
Certainly not a slam-dunk .. but certainly noteworthy research .. (which is always good to see).