At PhysOrg they have a blurb about a paper showing that an organism that is 99.99% (!!) identical has, nevertheless, found a way of dealing with the presence of Uranium in completely different ways. Absolutely fascinating!
Obviously we’re dealing with two very different environments—one is in a volcanic spring, and the other is atop a pile of uranium waste apparently. One is liquid-based, the other land-based.
What I suspect has happened—keeping Behe’s Edge of Evolution in mind—is that two different parts of the genome have had to make their own respective a.a. substitutions (2? 3?), since the ‘solution’ in water most likely has different constraints than the ‘solution’ for an atmosphere-based form of the same organism.
Only detailed whole-genome analysis will uncover this. It should be interesting to see how well Behe’s EoE results hold up (i.e., 2-4 a.a.s) against such a detailed analysis. If they do, maybe even evolutionary biologists (otherwise known as “Darwinists”) will start paying attention.
In the meantime, that’s my best guess. Anyone else have some hypotheses?