Cell biology Evolution Intelligent Design

Some remarkable admissions in a Current Biology editorial

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Current Biology offers an edition that focuses on cellular evolution. Here’s some strange, ID-like talk from the editorial:

The evolutionary history of the cell is shrouded in a past so distant and deep it has left few tangible traces of what early cells might have looked like and which processes may have gone on inside them. Hence, the study of cellular evolutionary history relies largely on inference. These inferences center on phylogenetic frameworks built with extant cells. Their traits are compared, and what we know about their biology is projected into the past. Phylogenetic trees are calibrated and constrained by fossils and geological events so that a sequence of evolutionary transitions can be inferred. Naturally, speculation and contention abound — which is part of the charm of this field.

Florian Maderspacher, “The long dark teatime of the cell” at Current Biology

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. Further:

As with LUCA, inferring the nature of the common ancestor of eukaryotes is fraught with problems. On the one hand, the epochal merger — the engulfment of an alphaproteobacterium by the eukaryote ancestor — has the potential to make for a perfect kickstart to eukaryote evolution and complexification. Harnessing the aerobic energy-generation capability of this bacterium may have endowed the budding eukaryote with such a surplus of energy that it enabled a great expansion of genetic inventory, which in turn led to ever more complex cellular processes and structures. And these cells could grow and make a living by eating others. On the other hand, there is again a threshold of minimum complexity beyond which there are no bona fide living eukaryotes that are primitive enough so they could serve as models for important transitory forms (whatever we see as missing traits in eukaryotes is evidently due to secondary losses). This leaves us again with a conundrum in which the ancestor must have been already fairly complex — not least because it needed to be able to endocytose the bacterium — pushing back the problem of when eukaryotic complexity arose. But this time, somewhat of a deus ex machina came to the rescue — the discovery of an entirely new lineage of archaea.

Florian Maderspacher, “The long dark teatime of the cell” at Current Biology

A deus ex machina is the intervention of a god in an ancient stage play. If these folks are here now, where will they be in a decade?

3 Replies to “Some remarkable admissions in a Current Biology editorial

  1. 1
    polistra says:

    Semi-related:

    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0141029619333814?via%3Dihub

    Engineers seeking the Origin of Structures have figured out that a common technique in church domes from the 1500s replicates the double-helix of DNA. The architects obviously didn’t have microscopes, but they were solving the same problem that God had solved somewhat earlier. How to weave a complex self-supporting structure without any scaffolds or forms. And they came up with the same answer.

  2. 2
    bornagain77 says:

    As to: ” inferring the nature of the common ancestor of eukaryotes is fraught with problems.”

    No kidding? But isn’t Darwinian evolution suppose to be ‘settled science’??

    Evolutionist’s Overreach on Eukaryote Evolution Fuels Journalistic Frenzy – May, 16, 2015
    Excerpt: Ettema’s latest paper, makes the rather startling claim, that complex archaea “bridge the gap” between prokaryotes and eukaryotes and share a common ancestry with eukaryotes. That is quite a claim. What Ettema and co-workers discovered was an archaeal phylum they have named “Lokiarchaeota,”,,,
    But alas, and as usual, there was no such breakthrough. What in fact the evolutionists found was that using a highly select, prepared, refined and cleansed set of molecular sequence data, with computer algorithms whose logic assumes evolution is true to begin with, their new Lokiarchaeota species align with the eukaryotes. And so from an evolutionary perspective, there is an important evolutionary relationship with the eukaryotes. In all they found a whopping 3.3% of the Lokiarchaeota proteins to be similar to eukaryotic proteins.
    That leads the evolutionists to declare that today’s Lokiarchaeota shares a common ancestry with eukaryotes. From a scientific perspective that is not merely an unsupported conclusion, it is contradictory to a mountain of empirical evidence.,,,
    This is beyond absurd, and the evolutionist’s non-scientific truth claims have had the usual effect of fueling yellow journalism. One need look no further than the Washington Post, whose headline declares that:
    “Newly discovered “missing link” shows how humans could evolve from single-celled organisms”
    Shows how humans could evolve?,, This isn’t even wrong.
    http://darwins-god.blogspot.co.....ryote.html

    Information Processing Differences Between Archaea and Eukarya—Implications for Homologs and the Myth of Eukaryogenesis by Change Tan and Jeffrey P. Tomkins on March 18, 2015
    Abstract
    In the grand schema of evolution, a mythical prokaryote to eukaryote cellular transition allegedly gave rise to the diversity of eukaryotic life (eukaryogenesis). One of the key problems with this idea is the fact that the prokaryotic world itself is divided into two apparent domains (bacteria and archaea) and eukarya share similarities to both domains of prokaryotes while also exhibiting many major innovative features found in neither. In this article, we briefly review the current landscape of the controversy and show how the key molecular features surrounding DNA replication, transcription, and translation are fundamentally distinct in eukarya despite superficial similarities to prokaryotes, particularly archaea. These selected discontinuous molecular chasms highlight the impossibility for eukarya having evolved from archaea. In a separate paper, we will address alleged similarities between eukarya and bacteria.
    https://answersingenesis.org/biology/microbiology/information-processing-differences-between-archaea-and-eukarya/

    Information Processing Differences Between Bacteria and Eukarya—Implications for the Myth of Eukaryogenesis by Change Tan and Jeffrey P. Tomkins on March 25, 2015
    Excerpt: In a previous report, we showed that a vast chasm exists between archaea and eukarya in regard to basic molecular machines involved in DNA replication, RNA transcription, and protein translation. The differences in information processing mechanisms and systems are even greater between bacteria and eukarya, which we elaborate upon in this report. Based on differences in lineage-specific essential gene sets and in the vital molecular machines between bacteria and eukarya, we continue to demonstrate that the same unbridgeable evolutionary chasms exist—further invalidating the myth of eukaryogenesis.
    https://answersingenesis.org/biology/microbiology/information-processing-differences-between-bacteria-and-eukarya/

    An enormous gap exists between prokaryote cells and eukaryote cells. – Jerry Bergman
    Excerpt: A crucial difference between prokaryotes and eukaryotes is the means they use to produce ATP. All life produces ATP by three basic chemical methods only: oxidative phosphorylation, photophosphorylation, and substrate-level phosphorylation (Lim, 1998, p. 149). In prokaryotes ATP is produced both in the cell wall and in the cytosol by glycolysis. In eukaryotes most ATP is produced in chloroplasts (for plants), or in mitochondria (for both plants and animals). No means of producing ATP exists that is intermediate between these four basic methods and no transitional forms have ever been found that bridge the gap between these four different forms of ATP production. The machinery required to manufacture ATP is so intricate that viruses are not able to make their own ATP. They require cells to manufacture it and viruses have no source of energy apart from cells.
    http://www.trueorigin.org/atp.asp

    Here is How the Cytoskeleton Evolved? – Cornelius Hunter – Sept. 1, 2014
    Excerpt: [the] fundamental unit of life, the cell, is actually organized upon a highly-structured three-dimensional truss structure known as the cytoskeleton,,,
    “it has become clear that there is no simple relationship between the cytoskeletons of prokaryotes and eukaryotes. Moreover, there is considerable diversity in both composition and function between cytoskeletons in different lines of prokaryotes and eukaryotes.”
    In fact the bacterial (cytoskeleton) designs are highly divergent amongst themselves. Molecular sequences, proteins used, lateral interactions within the filament, polarity (left-handed versus right-handed filaments), and so forth, are all inconsistent across the bacteria. It is not a story of an evolutionary progression.
    http://darwins-god.blogspot.co.....olved.html

    Did DNA replication evolve twice independently? – Koonin
    Excerpt: However, several core components of the bacterial (DNA) replication machinery are unrelated or only distantly related to the functionally equivalent components of the archaeal/eukaryotic (DNA) replication apparatus.
    http://nar.oxfordjournals.org/.....27/17/3389

    Bacterial Cell Division and Peptidoglycan Synthesis: An Evolutionary Enigma – April 3, 2013
    Excerpt: In eukaryotes, cell division occurs by either meiosis (sex cells) or mitosis (somatic cells). Bacteria, however, undergo neither of those processes (they are asexual and contain no membrane-enclosed organelles or nuclei). Bacterial cell division occurs by a process known as binary fission. Rod-shaped bacteria (e.g. Escherichia coli or Salmonella typhimurium) elongate to twice their original length. This is followed by invagination of the cell membrane, and the formation of a septal ring in the middle (Vicente et al., 2006; Weiss, 2004). The elongated bacterial cell splits down the middle, forming two daughter cells. ,,,
    Now, here’s the conundrum. Consider the following two observations: (1) Critical to the elongation process is the severing of the peptidoglycan cell wall by the autolysins. (2) Critical to cell viability is the re-synthesis of the peptidoglycan cell wall. This has to be done in a coordinated fashion. Breaking of the cell wall can serve no adaptive utility until a mechanism has arisen for the simultaneous integration of peptidoglycan precursors. Indeed, without the latter mechanism, the cell is rendered non-viable. This is a classic example of what one might describe as an irreducibly complex system.
    – per evolutionnews

    Bacteria Too Complex To Be Primitive Eukaryote Ancestors – July 2010
    Excerpt: “Bacteria have long been considered simple relatives of eukaryotes,” wrote Alan Wolfe for his colleagues at Loyola. “Obviously, this misperception must be modified…. There is a whole process going on that we have been blind to.”,,, For one thing, Forterre and Gribaldo revealed serious shortcomings with the popular “endosymbiosis” model – the idea that a prokaryote engulfed an archaea and gave rise to a symbiotic relationship that produced a eukaryote.
    http://www.creationsafaris.com.....#20100712b

    Bacterial Complexity Revises Ideas About ‘Which Came First?’ – 2019
    Excerpt: As the evolutionary story is usually told, first came the prokaryotes: the archaea and bacteria, which are often envisioned as simple bags of enzymes without an intricate structure. Then, more than 1.5 billion years ago, eukaryotes evolved, marking the advent of unprecedented cellular complexity and permanently transforming life on Earth, allowing for the rise of animals, plants, fungi and protists. The eukaryotes represented a substantial departure from their predecessors, and the transition from an all-prokaryote world to one that contained eukaryotes is often described as abrupt and explosive.
    But this version of events ignores the fact that, for the past few decades, researchers have been quietly uncovering many complex structures within prokaryotes, including membrane-bound organelles. In contrast to eukaryotes, which all have a suite of organelles in common, different groups of prokaryotes showcase their own specialized compartments. One kind of bacterial organelle, discovered in 1979, is essentially a little magnet wrapped in a lipid package; another hosts a series of reactions crucial for energy metabolism; still others serve as small storage units for nutrients.
    And that list is only growing as scientists discover more and more compartments within supposedly simple bacterial cells. “Bacteria are a lot more complex, in other words, and may have a lot more similarities in their biology to eukaryotes than people have assumed in the past,” said John Fuerst, a microbiologist at the University of Queensland in Australia. The very existence of organelles in these bacteria, coupled with intriguing parallels to the more familiar ones that characterize eukaryotes, has prompted scientists to revise how they think about the evolution of cellular complexity — all while offering new ways to probe the basic principles that underlie it.
    https://www.quantamagazine.org/bacterial-organelles-revise-ideas-about-which-came-first-20190612/

  3. 3
    Blastus says:

    Thank you BA77. That is a compelling list of comments on bacterial complexities.

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