Plants Have Their Own Designed Network

Back in 2001, an interesting discovery was made…

“Molecular messengers carry vital instructions from leaves to far-flung stems, say US researchers. Long-distance traffic in grafted tomato stems switches leaves from pointy to round, the team found. This insight into how plant parts talk may help farmers to propagate fruit trees and defend plants against disease..”

Plants that use small channels to link to other cells so things like proteins and sugars which travel from one cell to another until they reach the plant’s super-highway: vessels called phloem. It’s quite remarkable, a plant that is quiet and motionless gives no indication that it can communicate. Compare this to a rock has been exposed to deadly radiation that somehow miraculously get it’s own internet. Evolution has to get one thing from another!

It’s been nine years, what have scientist learned from this discovery?  More intriguing things have been reported…Gene regulation play a key role where micro-RNAs are engaged in two-way communication between two cells…

“They also add a new element to the already complex interplay in Arabidopsis roots between two proteins, known as Scarecrow and Short-root, that Benfey’s team had described in earlier work.  Those proteins interact and restrain one another to allow the assembly of a waterproofing layer of cells that ultimately enables plants to control precisely how much water and nutrients they take in.

The researchers now show that Short-root moves from cells in the plant’s inner vasculature out into the waterproofing endodermis that surrounds it to activate Scarecrow.  Together, those two transcription factors (genes that control other genes) activate microRNAs, known as MIR165a and 166b.  Those microRNAs then head back toward the vascular cells, meeting and degrading another transcription factor (called Phabulosa) as well as other regulatory factors along the way.”

For correct patterning of tissues, this internet is vital as Susan Haynes of NIH points out, “This study provides important insight into how cells communicate positional information to orchestrate  the complex process of tissue and organ development.”

The evolutionary story assumes miracles happen on cue in order for it’s survival. But think about a single-celled alga which requires a tube to conduct water with a waterproofing layer in order for it to grow a tree.  How many one-cell algae would have died off without the tube before an unthinking process would have figured out how to build a tube? It doesn’t make any logical sense that an unthinking process would have such an ability.  Only an intelligent designer would have such an ability to create such functions in which we observe.


19 thoughts on “Plants Have Their Own Designed Network

  1. Michael !!!!

    Michael !

    Those questions !

    When are you going to answer our questions instead of just posting yet another illogical piece ?

    “It doesn’t make any logical sense that an unthinking process would have such an ability. Only an intelligent designer would have such an ability to create such functions in which we observe.”

    So your designer is illogical now ?? Intelligent but illogical ? I guess he/she/it has tantrums as well …

  2. Tthe questions are:

    (1) Blog readership numbers in response to Eelco’s February challenge that your readership asymptotically approaches zero’

    (2) Your qualifications to discuss any scientific subject, in response to Olorin’s February accusation of towering ignorance and gynormous falsehoods in your posts.

    (3) A substantive review of Signature in the Cell, promised for August 2009.

    You can run, but you can’t hide.

  3. Michael: “It’s quite remarkable, a plant that is quiet and motionless gives no indication that it can communicate.”

    It is remarkable. And, as Michael notes, biologists are conducting research to understand this communication pathway.

    Are these diligent researchers creationists? Nooooo. Do creationists give a flying fig as to how a biological mechanism might function? Noooo. Have any creationists ever turned a hand to exploit any biological function for human benefit? Noooo.

    All creationists do is marvel mindlessly at the discoveries made by science. Well, scientists marvel as well. but, as Douglas Adams once noted, “I’ll take the awe of understanding over the awe of ignorance any day.”[1]


    But why should Michael gush over a new mechanism of plant communication? Because in his ignorance he is unaware that plants actually communicate with each other, to warn their kin of predators and environmental conditions. And he is unaware that algae and even bacteria communicate with each other. (These latter were discovered by evolutionary biologists seeking insight into the rise of multicellular organisms.) Yes, Michael is oblivious to the many modalities of communication that biologists have discovered. Therefore, each one bursts upon his consciousness as unexpected and complex, and unlike anything that has ever been analyzed before.


    One of Douglas Adams’ stories from “The Salmon of Doubt” is apropos.

    Once a puddle formed in a pothole after a rain. The puddle marveled at how its shape exactly fit the contours of the pothole, and ascribed it to divine beneficence. The puddle congratulated itself itself upon the special power that allowed it to retain its relationship with the hole as the breeze evaporated its surface. The puddle continued to regard itself as a special creation until the moment it disappeared.


    [1] From a potpourri of posthumously published works, collected under the title “The Salmon of Doubt.” Worthwhile listening to on a CD. Richard Dawkins has a forward, which he reads himself. And a eulogy that he gave at Adams’ funeral in 2001.

  4. “The evolutionary story assumes miracles happen on cue in order for[sic] it’s [sic] survival.”

    You have it backwards, Michael. Creationism is the theory that assumes miracles happen on cue.

    In evolution, the organisms that do not adapt become extinct. And most of them have.

    The only exception seems to be creationists, who show few signs of adaptation, and yet have not died out. But evolution is a slow process. We know that knowledge is toxic to them, and the level of knowledge in the atmosphere continues to increase.

    However, biblical creationists did ultimately abandon the belief in a flat Earth and adapted to heliocentrism as the Space Age began in the 1950s.. Wilbur Glen Voliva, evangelical leader, founder of the City of Zion, aspiring witness against evolution at the Scopes trial, spoke for biblical literalists thus in the 1920s:

    “I believe the earth is a stationary plane; that it rests upon water: and that there is no such thing as the earth moving, no such thing as the earth’s axis or the earth’s orbit. It is a lot of silly rot, born in the egotistical brain of infidels… I get my astronomy from the Bible.” (R.J. Schadewald, Fate, May 1989, p70)

    So perhaps creationists will yet adapt to evolution. But, having lost vitalism, geocentrism, and evolution, what will they have left? Unicorn sightings?

  5. Creationists seem to think that plants and animals have all the complex stuff. Since these multicellular organisms have only been around for 500 million years,[1] how would they have had time to evolve all the complex stuff such as the signaling pathways of the present post?

    But the history of life on Earth spans 7 times as long as the history of plants and animals. What were the dominant forms of life doing all of that time? Sitting on their cytoskeletons and playing cards? No. Almost all of the capabilities that cells display in plants and animals are also useful to primitive single cells, and they spent 3 billion years evolving them.

    PZ Myers says it well in a recent Pharyngula post:[2]

    What life has done is taken useful functional elements that were worked out in the teeming, diverse gene pools of the dominant single-celled forms of life on earth and repurposed it in novel ways. The really interesting big bang of life occurred long before the Cambrian, as organisms evolved useful tools for signaling, adhesion, regulation, and so forth — all stuff that was incredibly useful for a single cell negotiating through space and time in a complex external environment, and which could be coopted for building multicellular organisms.


    [1] Or 6,014 years if you are a biblical literalist.


  6. ………………………. BREAKING NEWS …………………….

    Creationists have always insisted that there are no intermediate fossils in the human line. Any new fossil must be either human or ape. Moreover, the difference is immediately apparent:

    “When complete fossils are found, they are easy to assign clearly as either ‘ape’ or human, there are only ‘ape-men’ where imagination colored by belief in evolution is applied to fragmented bits and pieces.”[1]

    The 2 million year old fossils recently classified as Australopithecus sediba have provoked some head scratching among paleontologists as to whether these fossils represent the end of the Australopithecus line or the beginning of the descendant Homo genus. But creationists should have no doubts as to whether the fossils are Ape or Human.

    So what is the breaking news?

    CREATIONISTS CAN’T DECIDE WHETHER AU. SEDIBA IS APE OR HUMAN! “Creationists must be cautious interpreting news like this,” AiG intones.[2] Even though modern apes and modern humans are very easy to distinguish, even by a layman. Could this fossil possibly be an intermediate? Could it be true?


    [1] Answers in Genesis, August 1999, “Up from the Apes”.

    [2] AiG, April 10, 2010, “Is it time already for the announcement of yet another ‘missing link’? Apparently so!”

  7. Eelco,

    Let’s put it this way, we don’t observe nature making computer programs (neither do we see DNA forming outside the body naturally), we observe intelligence creating those programs, no matter how many theories you can come up with that change and rearrange themselves, computer programs are created by intelligence. Your question is a far reaching one, very emotional for someone like you. Plants have an unique design of their own network in which they can communicate information. You have to yet to come up with a logical reason based on physical evidence on how evolution without thinking, could have come up with such a complex and specified design!

  8. Michael, I haven’t the foggiest idea what you are talking about … computer programs made by nature ? Since when is DNA supposed to be a computer program ?

    And me emotional ? I’m just getting annoyed by you dodging the questions, for ever and ever and ever …

    So what about an answer to those questions ? Why not, Michael ? Surpass yourself !

  9. Should I speak something else rather than English? Many of your questions use circular reasoning. Sometimes new discoveries address what you wrote in the past…Science progresses as you know.

    Funny how you dodge questions yourself while complaining about me…lol…Since we know DNA doesn’t create naturally outside the body, even labs where the atmosphere is controlled by intelligent people who are trying to create certain conditions for it with no success. Yes, DNA is like a computer, it provides information to the protein to create another. Just like a computer needs a code to function. Although there is one main difference, a computer cannot reproduce itself…No self-building mechanism in it.

  10. Wow.

    Which questions am I supposed to be dodging ? That is rather rich, coming from you ….

    You still haven’t answered the three questions that we asked you many, many times. THOSE are the questions YOU are dodging, so do not just bounce this accusation back.

  11. Stumbled on the site, perused it, laughed, shook my head, posted.

    The author has but a few core “followers”, all of whom challenge his reasoning, and attempt to tear down his illogic. He always comes out on top, having the thickest, densest noggin. ;)
    Unshaken in faith, more fallacious posts emerge. Lather, rinse, repeat.

    Perhaps Michael’s mission is to keep “evolutionists” busy in debates, wasting their time. [seeing as no one is taking his side, or being swayed by his arguments]

    So, either you folks are bulwarks against erroneous info, or you’re binding with the blog’s “receptor sites” instead of impressionable creation scientists.

    It’s a noble cause/exercise, but I hope your knowledge and talents are being applied elsewhere, with more formidable foes and colleagues.

    Cheers. [If this post never appears, I will assume confirmation of my “time wasting” theory…which would be shameful on two counts.]

  12. Hey Keeyop,

    Many people believe in creationism and many remain theists despite shallow attempts to prove otherwise, I believe you are referring to those who are regulated and paid to work in a certain framework known as evolution.

  13. @keeyop: don’t worry: I spend a minor, minor, minor, minor fraction of my time on this blog. It is a good exercise, though, to try and get through such a thick brick wall. More of a challenge than talking to like-minded people.

    Michael, I do not get paid to work on biological evolution, but on the evolution of galaxies. This does not involve reproduction (sex !), so could be considered dull by some. But it certainly is a lot of fun.

    Unlike this blog, which is a mere exercise in wall drilling.

  14. Michael: “Wishful thinking! This post of yours is off the plant topic! Did you get lost?”

    Sorry for being off topic as to this post. I thought you might be interested in settling this creationist conundrum with a definitive declaration before your secret source gets around to it.

  15. Keeyop, we “core followers” have no issue with Michael’s religious beliefs per se. What we object to is that he flings falsehoods about science in furtherance of these beliefs. We have been urging Michael for many months to state his qualifications to discuss any scientific subject whatsoever, to determine whether he is (a) deliberately lying, or (b) speaking from towering ignorance in reckless disregard for the truth.

    Like Eelco, I am not paid by the Evolutionary Establishment. I am a patent attorney with a graduate degree in physics, some experience in bioinformatics, and an interest in the all kinds of science, including its history and philosophy. Being retired, I can take some time away from organizing my photos to devote to exposing Michael’s misinformation.

    Besides, it is an intellectual exercise to show how Michael is wrong, rather than merely stating a conclusion. I usually learn something myself in the effort.

  16. Michael: “Should I speak something else rather than English?”

    No, English would be fine, if you could manage it. For example, I’m still trying to unwind the grammar of your sentence:

    “Since we know DNA doesn’t create naturally outside the body, even labs where the atmosphere is controlled by intelligent people who are trying to create certain conditions for it with no success.”

    Hm. That doesn’t work either. How about the semantics of this sentence:

    “Many of your questions use circular reasoning.

    Since when do “questions” use circular reasoning?[1]

    Then let’s wade through this false analogy and biology gaffe::

    ‘Yes, DNA is like a computer, it provides information to the protein to create another. ”

    First, I have never met a computer that provides any information to proteins, which is what this sentence asserts on its face.

    Second, proteins do not create other proteins by providing information to them. Proteins don’t create other proteins at all. Michael claims to have been exposed to evolution. This must have been in Sunday School, because it was surely not accompanied by any biology. The above statement would flunk an 8th-grade test. You should let your source handle the sciencey stuff.

    “Although there is one main difference, a computer cannot reproduce itself…No self-building mechanism in it.”


    To say that this is a “main difference” must be the understatement of the year.


    [1] Another quick quiz, Michael. What are the two types of circular reasoning? (Hint: petitio principii et ignorantio elenchi)

  17. Hey Michael, nice article. I am astounded at the riffraff that follows your posts who neither understand science nor creationists. Gene regulation is really cool and adds to my sense of awe of our Creator. :-)

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