Bacterial Intelligence? self ID using a virus (General)

by David Turell @, Wednesday, April 17, 2019, 15:27 (7 days ago) @ dhw

QUOTE: “all bacteria are usually starving," Wood says[/i]. (David’s bold)

dhw: I don’t know why you’ve bolded this. Hunger is a great spur to action in all organisms. How does this prove they are not intelligent?

I did not equate hunger with intelligence. Why did you? Frankly, I did not know bacteria were never satiated.


QUOTE: "This newly discovered mechanism of allows bacteria to form social groups, cooperating with kin while antagonizing non-kin during behaviors that may be important for nourishment, virulence, protection, quorum sensing, and biofilm formation. (dhw’s bold) "Bacteria are frequently thought of as living individually, but in fact they can forage for food as groups," Wood says. "In order to act as a group, they must be able to distinguish themselves from other bacteria. In one type of social activity, when they communicate, bacterial cells secrete chemical signals to communicate. Now we show cells utilize viruses to distinguish themselves from closely related bacteria.'" (David’s bold)

dhw: Surprise, surprise, when material beings communicate, they use material means. How does this come to indicate that they may well be entirely automatic (see below)?

Molecular reactions between ligands and sensors are molecular reactions, nothing more.


DAVID: This is a lucky outcome. The helpful virus attacks the bacteria. That is what it is built to do. It doesn't have a good deed in mind. Note the bolds: it is interesting that bacteria are always hungry and hunt in groups. And note how they communicate, by sending chemical signals. This may well be entirely automatic.

dhw: Why is it down to luck? (I thought anyway that you believed it was down to your God’s programming 3.8 billion years ago.) It is indeed interesting that they cooperate, communicate, distinguish one life form from another according to whether these are goodies or baddies. Sounds to me more like intelligence than luck or non-thinking obedience to instructions.

Your statement is fuzzy logic. I do not think in a rigid fashion as you imply. God's control or His programs are not involved. In this case a virus infects a bacteria, which is its role in life. You imply the bacteria invited the virus in. Not so. The virus attacks the bacteria which cannot kill it, It just happens to help the bacteria in self-identification. What is not luck? No intelligence involved. Many bacteriophages (viruses) do kill bacteria.


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