Horizontal gene transfer: does influence evolution (Introduction)

by David Turell @, Sunday, September 08, 2019, 14:58 (11 days ago) @ dhw

QUOTES: Rather than evolving from one ‘last universal ancestor’, all life arose from a communal pool of primitive cells with unbridled zeal for exchanging DNA. For relatively simple cells with only a handful of genes each, swapping DNA was an excellent strategy for acquiring and preserving the best adaptations around.
"Genes are concerned with one thing above all else: self-perpetuation. If such preservation requires a particular gene to adapt to a genome it has never encountered before – if riding a parasite from one species to another turns out to be an extremely successful way of guaranteeing perpetuity – so be it. Species barriers might protect the integrity of a genome as a whole, but when an individual gene has a chance to advance itself by breaching those boundaries, it will not hesitate.

DAVID: No question horizontal gene transfer is a major contributor to the course of evolution.

dhw: And so we begin the process with cells cooperating in order to enhance their chances of survival. Between us we have come up with three separate theories as to how this cooperation has led to evolution: 1) David’s God preprogrammed every single new combination of cells; 2) David’s God personally manipulated each new combination as and when he felt like it (dabbling); 3) (theistic version) David’s God designed the cells with the intelligence to work out their own ways of cooperating. This particular article uses interesting language: “unbridled zeal”, “excellent strategy”, “are concerned with”, “a chance to advance itself…it will not hesitate”. Sounds like (3) to me!

Or the 'intelligence of cells' is the programmed information from God. 1,2, and 3 may all be the same.


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