How Richard Dawkins Fights For Evolution

One has observe it in the pages of research, now one has observed it in the realm of debate. Back in 2009, Richard Dawkins thought he was putting it to the creationists and the modern intelligent design movement with his argument about junk DNA.

Here is what he says in his book, The Greatest Show on Earth (pp. 332-333)…

“It stretches even their creative ingenuity to make a convincing reason why an intelligent designer should have created a pseudogene — a gene that does absolutely nothing and gives every appearance of being a superannuated version of a gene that used to do something — unless he was deliberately setting out to fool us.”

Now here, Dawkins believes that pseudogenes are genetic relics that have lost their original protein-coding function which had been possessed by some ancestral creature. Thus, Dawkins contends that pseudogenes provide convincing evidence for evolutionary history rather than an intelligent designer namely, God!

Then Dawkins goes on to say in his book…

“Leaving pseudogenes aside, it is a remarkable fact that the greater part (95 percent in the case of humans) of the genome might as well not be there, for all the difference it makes…useful for. . . embarrassing creationists.”

Dawkins statement was embarrassing not creationists but rather the ENCODE project which back in 2007, two years before his book was published…was the remarkable and unexpected discovery (by evolutionists but predicted by creationists and proponents of intelligent design) that vast regions of non-coding DNA (formerly known as junk) were transcribed into RNA, This included what? Yes! This included a significant amount of pseudogenes!

There were other papers also being published that Dawkins failed to accept at the time like Balakirev and Ayala who wrote two papers back in 2003 and 2004 (here and here) on discovering functions with pseudogenes.

The two papers talk about pseudogenes being involved with gene expression, gene regulation, generation of genetic (antibody, antigenic, and other) diversity.

“Pseudogenes are involved in gene conversion or recombination with functional genes. Pseudogenes exhibit evolutionary conservation of gene sequence, reduced nucleotide variability, excess synonymous over non-synonymous nucleotide polymorphism, and other features that are expected in genes or DNA sequences that have functional roles.”

The modern Intelligent Design Movement had also predicted function in junk DNA even though it was the prevailing viewpoint in evolutionary theory to oppose it…Here is their trailer about this very subject…

Even this gal in her youtube  program, “Ask A Biologist” who is very smart also predicts function with junk DNA…

So there was research refuting one of Dawkins arguments against creationism and yet he decided to try to stick it us.  Ok, fast-forward to 2012…

Wait a minute! Dawkins not only acknowledges that what was considered junk DNA, does in fact have function like pseudogenes and that but evolution predicted it all along….lol My question to Richard Dawkins is when and why he changed his mind? I know why he hasn’t admitted his mistake because he doesn’t want to look weak in front of creationists and his choir. But the reality of it is in black and white.

So this is how Richard Dawkins fights for evolution, he is not totally honest with the public about his position. One has to keep in mind, many of them use a similar slant for debate. I have never seen a top-notch creation scientist debate like Richard Dawkins does and that is because they are honest! It’s not like creation scientists don’t make mistakes, they are human too which is something Richard Dawkins should think of himself, human who makes mistakes! He is wrong about evolution!

Most Ambitious Human Genetics Project To Date

New science is putting the so-called leftovers from our supposed evolutionary past to shame! When the first study of the genome was published about 11 years ago, scientists were surprised to find that only about 3% of it coded for proteins and the rest was considered, “junk DNA.”

Then of course new science discoveries came to be where researchers discovered coded information in the “epigenome,” which includes RNAtranscripts that regulate the code.  New results from the most ambitious human genetics project to date,  show at the least, 80 percent of the genome has a function! A remarkable turnaround in slightly over a decade.

The turnaround has become one of the major stories for science discoveries this year and could be the best breakthrough study out of them all in science for this year as well! Numerous publications have been writing about it. Over 20 papers were published in various publications like Genome Research and Genome Biology, along with reviews in The Journal of Biological Chemistry. Even my local newspaper made this front page news and described what it means for possible future medical uses.

It also has Darwinists putting to rest the notion of  leftovers from our supposed evolutionary past which had been heavily promoted by militant evolutionists who lobby hard against creationism and intelligent design such as  P.Z. Myers, Nick Matzke, Jerry Coyne, Kenneth Miller and British atheist, Richard Dawkins.

It has been part of the creationism model and ID proponents who have argued for years that function will be discovered for much of our DNA that was once considered to be useless with better science and indeed it has!

In an article in Nature

“The human genome encodes the blueprint of life, but the function of the vast majority of its nearly three billion bases is unknown. The Encyclopedia of DNA Elements (ENCODE) project has systematically mapped regions of transcription, transcription factor association, chromatin structure and histone modification.”

These data enabled us to assign biochemical functions for 80% of the genome, in particular outside of the well-studied protein-coding regions. Many discovered candidate regulatory elements are physically associated with one another and with expressed genes, providing new insights into the mechanisms of gene regulation. The newly identified elements also show a statistical correspondence to sequence variants linked to human disease, and can thereby guide interpretation of this variation.

“Overall, the project provides new insights into the organization and regulation of our genes and genome, and is an expansive resource of functional annotations for biomedical research.”  

Was the evolutionary explanation helpful with this discovery? Nope.  In this article in Nature, it says…“Why evolution would maintain large amounts of ‘useless’ DNA had remained a mystery, and seemed wasteful,” Barroso wrote.  “It turns out, however, that there are good reasons to keep this DNA.”

Language like  “evolutionary constraints” and “evolutionarily conserved” used in many of the articles is another indication that evolution was useless when it came to this discovery. Both of those terms of course refer to lack of evolution rather than showing evolution which is why the likes of P.Z. Myers, Nick Matzke, Jerry Coyne, Kenneth Miller and Richard Dawkins advocate junk DNA very heavily! Perhaps it will modify their position, anything left which is considered “junk DNA” they will begin to focus on. Or they could hold the position what New Scientist is now advocating with their skepticism of finding function with non-coding DNA.

“The ENCODE project has revealed that 80 per cent of our genome does something, but doing something is not the same as doing something useful…there are still very good reasons for thinking that most of our DNA is far from essential.”

You can tell that this discovery is not good for evolution when you have a publication like New Scientist that confuses “essential” with “adaptive” and then begs the question whether something useful must be essential. On the other side, ID proponents are jumping for joy, Casey Luskin writes

“We will have more to say about this blockbuster paper from ENCODE researchers in coming days, but for now, let’s simply observe that it provides a stunning vindication of the prediction of intelligent design that the genome will turn out to have mass functionality for so-called “junk” DNA. ENCODE researchers use words like “surprising” or “unprecedented.”

“They talk about of how “human DNA is a lot more active than we expected.” But under an intelligent design paradigm, none of this is surprising. In fact, it is exactly what ID predicted.” 

While this breakthrough in science has caused a problem for the story of evolution, Darwinists have pushed back the idea of forcing the data into their evolutionary framework for future researchers such as in this article, “Evolution and the Code” where one scientist mentions it, but the other three did not which doesn’t mean they didn’t go along with the assumption in the same paper in which they co-wrote together.

Here is a video, where it suggest there might be more than 80 percent function with the genome. “There are probably things that we have no idea what they’re doing and yet they’re going something important.” A logical assumption considering the pattern of discoveries being made so far!

 

Evolution has hurt this part of research for years with its assumption of junk DNA but not anymore. Now researchers are looking for more functions than ever before! Here is more quotes by scientists…

“I don’t think anyone would have anticipated even close to the amount of sequence that ENCODE has uncovered that looks like it has functional importance,” says John A. Stamatoyannopoulos, an ENCODE researcher at the University of Washington, Seattle.  He is referring to researchers who believe in evolution, other scientists have anticipated a lot more sequence that ENCODE.

“It’s a treasure trove of information,” says Manolis Kellis, a computational biologist from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge who analyzed data from the project.

“Regulation is a 3D puzzle that has to be put together,” Gingeras says. “That’s what ENCODE is putting out on the table.”

What an amazing time we live in! Wow! Unless there is a cure for cancer or someone lands on Mars, this is no doubt the science breakthrough for 2012 which confirms creationism and will also help improve the health of mankind!

Denisovan Genome Disproves Human Evolution

In a Siberian cave, far from Europe, scientists discover a finger bone and two teeth. What were they? According to the story of human evolution, these people were a less-known group called the Denisovans.

Scientists who believed in human evolution were surprised not just by discovering another group of ancient humans, because with just meager fragments, 70 percent of the DNA still remained in what they considered to be 82,000 years old! What? Let me say that again, the DNA remained in what they considered to be 82,000 years old! Does soft tissue really last that long even at 30,000 years old? No! But if you believe in human evolution one has to suspend logic for a story.

In nature news a revised take on the story with new twists with the discovery in mind…

“Unfortunately, the Denisovan genome doesn’t provide many more clues about what this hominin looked like than a pinky bone does. The researchers will only conclude that Denisovans likely had dark skin. They also note that there are alleles “consistent” with those known to call for brown hair and brown eyes. Other than that, they cannot say.”

“Yet the new genetic analysis does support the hypothesis that Neandertals and Denisovans were more closely related to one another than either was to modern humans. The analysis suggests that the modern human line diverged from what would become the Denisovan line as long as 700,000 years ago—but possibly as recently as 170,000 years ago.”

How could have ancient humans who lived in a Siberian cave who were considered lower than Neanderthals interbreed with modern humans? Before the  sequencing of the genome took place it would have been considered, impossible! But in human evolution, falsifications are confirmations as shown below…

“Going back further in time will be exciting.  There’s a huge race on—it’s exciting” says John Hawkins.

Rather than admitting their evolutionary story had been wrong with real-time observations, it’s now a race to get to the finish line.  Not only that but it is implausible that this bone contained 70% of its original DNA after 82,000 years! Who would believe such preservation of soft tissue? It’s a stretch to say the least. It’s much more likely that this individual lived a few thousand years ago at most.

Who would believe that the Denisovan people who stayed isolated from the rest of the world, who never thought of making tools to build a town or even ride a horse for over a hundred thousand years but being able to travel vast distances to court with modern humans in Europe every now and then.  Talk about a bizarre story in human evolution!

While a new sequencing technique now available to researchers that can be used to discern a genome from one DNA strand rather than both is quite remarkable but trying to explain it in historical terms which is forced into a particular framework known as human evolution, is not remarkable, it’s not even science.

We live in an exciting time, since the earth is actually thousands of years old, we are able to learn more about the past rather than loosing valuable information which comes from DNA if the earth was older!

Breaking News: Stem Cell Research

Adult stem cell research is providing opportunities to treat people with a various  diseases and conditions.  In 2010, a man’s ankle refused to heal so the doctor took  bone marrow from the man’s pelvic bone with a needle, condensed it to about four teaspoons of rich red liquid, and injected that into his ankle. Four months later, the ankle was healed!

Since 2000, there has been great controversy over stem cell research namely embryonic stem cells which is mainly left-wing  ideology that blamed former President Bush for denying treatments rather than where the science goes. Embryonic stem cells are taken from a developing embryo at the blastocyst stage, destroying the embryo, a developing human life.

Adult stem cells, on the other hand, are found in all tissues of the growing human being and, according to latest reports, also have the potential to transform themselves into practically all other cell types, or revert to being stem cells with greater reproductive capacity.  Here is some of the latest research concerning stem cells…

How often have you donated or seen money raised for muscular dystrophy? Has there been any progress recently? Well yes there has been!

In phys.org…

“The research, published today in Cell Stem Cell, outlines the strategy for the development of a rapidly dividing population of skeletal myogenic progenitor cells (muscle-forming cells) derived from induced pluripotent (iPS) cells. iPS cells have all of the potential of embryonic stem (ES) cells, but are derived by reprogramming skin cells. They can be patient-specific, which renders them unlikely to be rejected, and do not involve the destruction of embryos.”

“Upon transplantation into mice suffering from muscular dystrophy, human skeletal myogenic progenitor cells provided both extensive and long-term muscle regeneration which resulted in improved muscle function,” the article said.

In North Carolina  School of Medicine, they had discovered that embryonic stem cells will commit suicide rather than risk DNA damage! Bax is a protein that is responsible for causing cell death.

In phys.org…

“Of all the important things our bodies’ cells do, staying alive is clearly key. But a cell’s ability to die when something goes wrong is equally critical. For example, a faulty self-destruct button is one factor that allows cancer cells to proliferate unchecked and cause tumors.”

“Deshmukh and his colleagues discovered stem cells are extremely sensitive to DNA damage, which can be caused by factors like chemicals, radiation or viruses. The experiment showed that virtually 100 percent of human embryonic stem cells treated with a DNA-damaging drug killed themselves within 5 hours, as compared to 24 hours for other types of cells.”

There had been concerned over iPS stem cells but techniques for inducing pluripotent stem cells from tissues (iPS) continue to improve.

“Our results show that human iPS cells accrue genetic changes at about the same rate as any replicating cells, which we don’t feel is a cause for concern,” says Linzhao Cheng, Ph.D., a professor of medicine and oncology, and a member of the Johns Hopkins Institute for Cell Engineering.

“Each time a cell divides, it has the chance to make errors and incorporate new genetic changes in its DNA, Cheng explains. Some genetic changes can be harmless, but others can lead to changes in cell behavior that may lead to disease and, in the worst case, to cancer.”

Great research continues to progress with adult stem cells, the craziness of promoting ES back in 2000 to the present day were wrong.  If If iPS cells or other adult stem cells do better with fewer problems and no moral concerns, why is there a dispute?