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Joined: July 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Dec. 14 2011,07:00   

Quote (Southstar @ Dec. 14 2011,05:28)
This is the paper they hold next to their Bible. The claim is: this is what science believes since no scientist has ever published a paper that disprooves and or critisises Behe's "epic" work.


I consider MB’s characterization of most molecular evolution in these experiments as point mutations and/or deletions to be accurate.  Indeed, as I told MB in my comments on his ms, I had made the same point in a recent book chapter.  We have not seen the evolution of much novelty in these lab experiments on bacteria and viruses, at least not the classic gene duplication followed by diversification into new functions.  There is, however, a literature on what is known as directed evolution that does document the evolution of novelty when strong selection is applied to large populations, but those studies focus on individual genes (e.g., on plasmids) or short nucleic acids (e.g., 50-base RNA molecules).

What surprises me is that anyone would consider this absence of novelty in experimental evolution studies to be surprising, given what we know both about evolution and about the nature of the experiments.  As Jerry Coyne (JC) commented recently, the organisms and conditions used for those studies are not amenable to many of the types of evolutionary mechanisms and selective conditions that we think operate in nature.  The natural environment for many microbes includes lots of  free ‘environmental’ DNA from many sources, produced when cells die and release their DNA.  In addition, phages abound in natural environments, providing a ready means of DNA transfer between different bacteria, but many bacteria are also capable of incorporating environmental DNA into their genomes.

Some papers linked to on this comment probably of interest too:

In essence the consensus seems to be that as a paper there's nothing particularly wrong with it, but the conclusions touted by ID supporters are not actually mentioned within or supported by the paper itself.

I also mentioned that He'd have to give me a thorough explanation as to *why* I must "eat human babies".

if there are even critical flaws in Gauger’s work, the evo mat narrative cannot stand
Gordon Mullings

  366 replies since Nov. 08 2011,06:46 < Next Oldest | Next Newest >  

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