Harvard’s George Church: And if I were to be an intelligent design defender, that’s what I would focus on; how did the ribosome come to be?
At Wired: As they cleared paths of food, the E.coli tended to move toward unexplored, broth-rich areas, which ultimately helped them evacuate the maze. It took about 10 hours for about 1 percent of the multiple generations of bacteria to collectively solve the puzzle. That may not sound fast, but it’s five times faster than if the organisms had just been swimming around randomly, says Phan.
From Florida State: They also showed that the clathrin coat could make a so-called “basket” shape, and one that scientists had thought the protein could not form, showing that clathrin assembly is more complicated than previously thought. … “We found new structures and patterns that really surprised us.”
Researchers discovered this by accident: when the bacteria left manganese oxide in a dirty lab jar.
ENST: “Cells contain self-destruction kits, like spies with poison pills for use if captured. The poison pills consist primarily of the caspase family of proteins.”
It’s almost like the nervous system is software that was never used, but that raises Forbidden Ideas, doesn’t it?
No wonder these fields tend to be marked by a lack of progress.
Hmm. Either cells are smarter than we think or some sort of fine-tuning underlies biology.
At Quanta: Many researchers believe the selection to be random: Those right-handed genetic strands just happened to pop up first, or in slightly greater numbers. But for more than a century, some have pondered whether biology’s innate handedness has deeper roots.
If even the splitting of mammalian germ cells is not certain… maybe the 21st century would be better suited to questions in science than answers. It’s easier to get good answers when we have enough knowledge to get the questions right.
What he is saying is precisely Behe’s point in Darwin Devolves. Cell evolution is mostly about destroying complex equipment that hinders immediate survival. (The question of how the equipment came to be so complex beforehand is separate from the question of what life forms actually do when they evolve.)
So cellular evolution is not the assured result of settled science, as we’ve all been told. Well, it certainly did sound more like a catfight over there. With a similar respect for facts.
Is it one life form or many? Does it age or does it just die when something happens? What about apparent communal information processing in some colony organisms like the Paris Blob? The questions that seemed easy for an ant colony aren’t quite that way here.
It’s a good question whether Woese would have recognized the Archaea for what they were, had he not been in the habit of thinking for himself. Maybe he would have just been satisfied to shoehorn them into the conventional scheme somewhere.
“Not a random boo-boo on evolution’s part”? If the field of biology had not organized itself around Darwinian evolution (insert preferred terminology for the same sort of thing here) in the mid-twentieth century, would anyone think that up just now to account for all this?