Making new evolutionary innovations (Introduction)

by David Turell @, Tuesday, November 26, 2019, 00:40 (16 days ago) @ dhw

dhw: Plus two more. You are missing the point. We know what an adaptation is. What we do not know is the extent to which the mechanics of adaptation may lead to what we believe to be innovation, although the article points out that this may be a restructuring of existing structures:
"However, some experts argue this creates a problem since it means novelty must seemingly arise from nothing. It must "pop up out of the blue" in evolutionary time."
"Now evidence has emerged—in a study published Nov. 21 in the journal Science—that illuminates how new things can evolve.” (dhw’s bold – i.e. be formed out of existing things).

"The new IU-led study […] provides evidence that the formation of the thoracic horn is instructed by the same core network of genes that led to the evolution of insect wings…”

We know what adaptation means, but what appears to be innovation may actually be adaptation.
Now you’ve offered new quotes: 'This new evidence is profound since it suggests that all of this vast diversity, all these novelties could in fact be enabled by a single gene network that was used millions of years ago to form the flight wings on other body segments.” (David’s bold)

"The new discovery builds on insights by modern developmental genetics, which according to Nijhout “reveal[s] that a surprisingly small toolbox of regulatory genes controls the development of exceptionally diverse and seemingly unrelated structures'”. (David’s bold)

DAVID : note my bolds. It is genes not cell committees that cause major changes, genes that are free from designated restrictions as in multicellular organisms. Further the gene toolbox is setup very early by God to allow Him to manipulate advances easily. Behe thinks is is deletion which causes advances, and he presents lots of evidence from genomic studies of change.

dhw: You seem to think that genes are somehow separate from cells! Shapiro’s term is “natural genetic engineering”, and specifies that the cells “have the ability to alter their hereditary characteristics”. Of course there must be genes which can be altered, and your bolds simply confirm that the mechanism for common descent consists of a small supply of flexible genes which can be used in an almost infinite variety of ways. But used by what? You say God preprogrammed or personally dabbled every single change, and Behe presumably says all the programmes were present and God simply took away the irrelevant ones. Shapiro proposes that the cells themselves decide how to use their “toolbox” as and when new circumstances arise.

You persist in skipping over the fact that cells in multicellular organisms are programmed in their DNA for specificity of action. You are suggesting that somehow they have to get together and make decisions for enough changes to become new species. I'm staying with the descision as in the study an agency did the changes, as the study scientists actually did! And it fits what God as agent can do.


dhw: I’m actually hesitant about a “central command post” for the whole genome, though I accepted it earlier. I’d feel safer sticking with the concept of cooperation between intelligent cell communities.

DAVID: All of the cells in a multicellular organism have assigned duties The command post has to a part of the genome. All the cells have modified DNA to give them their job/purpose. Tell me where your committees exist?

I’ve just said that my cell communities cooperate, and since they are all different, it is fair to assume that they all have their own “command posts” somewhere within the cells themselves. And although the cells/cell communities have assigned duties if the organism is to function, they may be reassigned to different duties (as in the half-brain example) when they are exposed to new conditions or when things go wrong.

dhw: [re bacteria] I would suggest that their behaviour is mirrored by that of all the cell communities that make up all bodies: “they act as one united organism”. I’m sure Shapiro would agree.

DAVID: That is an exact extrapolation Shapiro uses for his theory of evolution. Bacteria are not multicellular organisms and must have their free-living attributes. Cells in whole multicellular organisms are fixed in their functions. The genome controls new species, as IDEer's believe by God's manipulation. If not God, materialism must accept the genome itself.

dhw: Please stop pretending that Shapiro only knows about bacteria.

That is not what I present to you. He has done a fabulous piece of work. Of course Shapiro knows about genetic biology all over the spectrum. His book is a presentation of his bacterial findings with an attempted extrapolation to the multicellular. His book is filled with references to current research which suggest there is a possibility his findings will in the future, with much more research, have an application. You do not understand his book from the reviews.


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