'Junk DNA' Intelligent Design

Did beliefs about junk DNA hinder the Human Genome Project?

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Consider this thought from a commentary at Nature:

A great debate pre-dated the start of the HGP: was it worth mapping the vast non-coding regions of genome that were called junk DNA, or the dark matter of the genome? Thanks in large part to the HGP, it is now appreciated that the majority of functional sequences in the human genome do not encode proteins. Rather, elements such as long non-coding RNAs, promoters, enhancers and countless gene-regulatory motifs work together to bring the genome to life. Variation in these regions does not alter proteins, but it can perturb the networks governing protein expression.

With the HGP draft in hand, the discovery of non-protein-coding elements exploded. So far, that growth has outstripped the discovery of protein-coding genes by a factor of five, and shows no signs of slowing. Likewise, the number of publications about such elements also grew in the period covered by our data set (1900 to 2017; see SI, Fig. S3a). For example, there are thousands of papers on non-coding RNAs, which regulate gene expression.

Alexander J. Gates, Deisy Morselli Gysi, Manolis Kellis & Albert-László Barabási, “A wealth of discovery built on the Human Genome Project — by the numbers” at Nature

But wasn’t a vast pile of junk DNA supposed to be one of the Great Proofs of Darwinism in the DNA? Funny, no one suggests that the constant diminution of the pile is evidence against the theory that its presence was supposed to be evidence for. Now why do you think that might be?

See also: Junk DNA regulates regeneration of tissues and organs.

12 Replies to “Did beliefs about junk DNA hinder the Human Genome Project?

  1. 1
    polistra says:

    If Big Science hadn’t been rejecting a vast pile of “junk papers” for 100 years, maybe the importance of “junk DNA” would have shown up earlier.

    There’s a real difference between these types of rejection. Junk DNA is still there whether we see it or not. We can choose to remove our theory goggles and see it properly. After we memoryhole an article for COMMIE SUBVERSIVE DEVIATIONIST LYSENKOISM, the article no longer exists.

  2. 2
    Seversky says:

    Five Things You Should Know if You Want to Participate in the Junk DNA Debate

    Here are five things you should know if you want to engage in a legitimate scientific discussion about the amount of junk DNA in a genome.

    Genetic Load

    Every newborn human baby has about 100 mutations not found in either parent. If most of our genome contained functional sequence information, then this would be an intolerable genetic load. Only a small percentage of our genome can contain important sequence information suggesting strongly that most of our genome is junk.

    C-Value Paradox

    A comparison of genomes from closely related species shows that genome size can vary by a factor of ten or more. The only reasonable explanation is that most of the DNA in the larger genomes is junk.

    Modern Evolutionary Theory

    Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of population genetics. The modern understanding of evolution is perfectly consistent with the presence of large amounts of junk DNA in a genome.

    Pseudogenes and broken genes are junk

    More than half of our genomes consists of pseudogenes, including broken transposons and bits and pieces of transposons. A few may have secondarily acquired a function but, to a first approximation, broken genes are junk.

    Most of the genome is not conserved

    Most of the DNA sequences in large genomes is not conserved. These sequences diverge at a rate consistent with fixation of neutral alleles by random genetic drift. This strongly suggests that it does not have a function although one can’t rule out some unknown function that doesn’t depend on sequence.

    If you want to argue against junk DNA then you need to refute or rationalize all five of these observations.

    Posted by Laurence A. Moran at Thursday, July 04, 2013

  3. 3
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    Seversky
    Five Things You Should Know if You Want to Participate in the Junk DNA Debate

    Junk DNA do not exist and is another defeater for darwinism. Scientists thought only protein coding DNA is functional and that tell anything we need to know about how clueless were scientists to think if you provide all construction materials ,bricks, electric wires ,windows somehow the house will built itself. The only problem is that you need MUCH MUCH MUCH MORE information to build the house than to make all basics materials for house.
    PS: You are so “well” informed.

  4. 4
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky, you do realize that Jonathan Wells refuted those arguments in his book ‘The Myth of Junk DNA’ do you not?

    The Myth of Junk DNA
    https://iconsofevolution.com/the-myth-of-junk-dna/

    Jonathan Wells: Zombie Science Keeps Pushing Junk DNA Myth
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kAY8p9ZfEFs

    Of note:

    February 2020 – A few different methods to infer virtually 100% functionality for the genome:
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/phantom-genes-turn-out-to-be-useful/#comment-692314

  5. 5
    PaV says:

    Seversky:

    Thank you for the very outdated memo from Larry Moran. He was wrong in 2013. Now, he’s even more wrong. We now know much, much more about those rascally “pseudogenes.” The problems that straight-up Darwinism had given “genetic load,” let Kimura to his Neutral Theory. And there are a variety of reasons for the C-Value “Paradox.”

  6. 6
    bornagain77 says:

    Although all of the arguments that Seversky listed from Larry Moran for Junk DNA are fatally flawed, let’s look at Moran’s genetic load argument in particular, (since that was the main argument that Moran, (and Graur), used when they tried to protest the ENCODE results which found widespread functionality across the entire genome), to see how easily the arguments that Darwinists use for Junk DNA fall apart under scrutiny.

    First off, the mathematics of population genetics has falsified Natural Selection as being a major player in evolution.

    The waiting time problem in a model hominin population – 2015 Sep 17
    John Sanford, Wesley Brewer, Franzine Smith, and John Baumgardner
    Excerpt: the waiting time for the fixation of a “string-of-one” is by itself problematic (Table 2). Waiting a minimum of 1.5 million years (realistically, much longer), for a single point mutation is not timely adaptation in the face of any type of pressing evolutionary challenge. This is especially problematic when we consider that it is estimated that it only took six million years for the chimp and human genomes to diverge by over 5 % [1]. ,,,
    While fixing one point mutation is problematic, our simulations show that the fixation of two co-dependent mutations is extremely problematic – requiring at least 84 million years (Table 2). This is ten-fold longer than the estimated time required for ape-to-man evolution.,,, Certainly the creation and fixation of a string of three (requiring at least 380 million years) would be extremely untimely (and trivial in effect), in terms of the evolution of modern man.
    ,,, When we increase the hominin population from 10,000 to 1 million (our current upper limit for these types of experiments), the waiting time for creating a string of five is only reduced from two billion to 482 million years.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pm.....MC4573302/

    And thus, without natural selection being a major player in evolution, Darwinists were forced, via the mathematics of population genetics, to believe that the vast majority of the genome was junk.

    As Dr. Robert Carter explains, “Based on the work of J.B.S. Haldane5 and others, who showed that natural selection cannot possibly select for millions of new mutations over the course of human evolution, Kimura6 developed the idea of “neutral evolution” (i.e. Kimura’s genetic load argument for the neutral theory), If “Haldane’s Dilemma”7 were correct, then the majority of DNA must be non-functional.”,,,
    “Junk DNA is not just a label that was tacked on to some DNA that seemed to have no function, but it is something that is required by evolutionary theory. Mathematically, there is too much variation, too much DNA to mutate, and too few generations in which to get it all done.”

    The slow, painful death of junk DNA – Robert W. Carter – 2009
    Background
    Based on the work of J.B.S. Haldane5 and others, who showed that natural selection cannot possibly select for millions of new mutations over the course of human evolution, Kimura6 developed the idea of “neutral evolution”. If “Haldane’s Dilemma”7 were correct, then the majority of DNA must be non-functional. It should be free to mutate over time without needing to be shaped by natural selection. In this way, natural selection could act on the important bits and neutral evolution could act randomly on the rest. Since natural selection will not act on neutral traits, which do not affect survival or reproduction, neutral evolution can proceed through random drift without any inherent “cost of selection”.8 The term “junk DNA” originated with Ohno,9 who based his idea squarely on the idea of neutral evolution. To Ohno and other scientists of his time, the vast spaces (introns)between protein-coding genes were (exons) just useless DNA whose only function was to separate genes along a chromosome. Junk DNA is a necessary mathematical extrapolation. It was invented to solve a theoretical evolutionary dilemma. Without it, evolution runs into insurmountable mathematical difficulties.
    Junk DNA necessary for evolution
    Junk DNA is not just a label that was tacked on to some DNA that seemed to have no function, but it is something that is required by evolutionary theory. Mathematically, there is too much variation, too much DNA to mutate, and too few generations in which to get it all done. This was the essence of Haldane’s work. Without junk DNA, evolutionary theory cannot currently explain how everything works
    mathematically.
    https://creation.com/images/pdfs/tj/j23_3/j23_3_12-13.pdf

    In other words, Neutral theory, and the entire concept of junk DNA, was not developed because of any compelling empirical observation, but was actually developed because it was forced upon Darwinists by the mathematics of population genetics. In plain English, neutral theory, and the entire concept of junk DNA, is actually the result of a theoretical failure of Darwinian evolution, specifically the theoretical failure of natural selection, within the mathematics of population genetics!

    Well, without natural selection, where does this leave Darwinists?

    In the following article Larry Moran quotes Austin Hughes who states, ‘Darwinism asserts that natural selection is the driving force of evolutionary change. It is the claim of the neutral theory, on the other hand, that the majority of evolutionary change is due to chance.’

    Austin Hughes and Neutral Theory – Laurence A. Moran – June 19, 2017
    Excerpt: Originally proposed by Motoo Kimura, Jack King, and Thomas Jukes, the neutral theory of molecular evolution is inherently non-Darwinian. Darwinism asserts that natural selection is the driving force of evolutionary change. It is the claim of the neutral theory, on the other hand, that the majority of evolutionary change is due to chance.
    http://sandwalk.blogspot.com/2.....heory.html

    Thus, with Natural selection being tossed by the wayside by the mathematics of population genetics, (and by empirical evidence I might add), as the supposed explanation for the ‘appearance of design’ that we see in life, Darwinists did not accept such a devastating finding from population genetics as an outright falsification for their theory, as they should have done, but are instead now reduced to arguing that the ‘appearance of design’ that we see pervasively throughout life is, basically, the result of pure chance with natural selection now playing a very negligible role if any role at all.

    To call such a move on the part of Darwinists disingenuous would be a severe understatement.

    Even Richard Dawkins himself finds the claim that chance can explain the wonderful design we see in biology to be absolutely inconceivable. In the following video Dawkins states that it “cannot come about by chance. It’s absolutely inconceivable that you could get anything as complicated or well designed as a modern bird or a human or a hedgehog coming about by chance.’

    4:30 minute mark: “It cannot come about by chance. It’s absolutely inconceivable that you could get anything as complicated or well designed as a modern bird or a human or a hedgehog coming about by chance. That’s absolutely out.,,, It’s out of the question.,,,
    So where (does the appearance of design)) it come from? The process of gradual evolution by natural selection.”
    Richard Dawkins – From a Frog to a Prince – video
    https://youtu.be/ClleN8ysimg?t=267

    For crying out loud, the entire purpose of ‘Natural Selection’ in the first place was to supposedly “explain away” the overwhelming ‘appearance of design’ without reference to any real Designer, i.e. without reference to God.

    “Yet the living results of natural selection overwhelmingly impress us with the appearance of design as if by a master watchmaker, impress us with the illusion of design and planning.”
    Richard Dawkins – “The Blind Watchmaker” – 1986 – page 21

    Thus contrary to what Darwinists may think, with the tossing of Natural Selection to the wayside, the explanation for the ‘appearance of design’ we see in life does not all of the suddden become, ‘Well, golly gee whiz, chance, all by its lonesome, must have done it all by itself, but instead the explanation for the ‘appearance of design’ we see in life reverts back to what it originally was.

    As Richard Sternberg explains, “Darwinism provided an explanation for the appearance of design, and argued that there is no Designer — or, if you will, the designer is natural selection. If that’s out of the way — if that (natural selection) just does not explain the evidence — then the flip side of that is, well, things appear designed because they are designed.”

    “Darwinism provided an explanation for the appearance of design, and argued that there is no Designer — or, if you will, the designer is natural selection. If that’s out of the way — if that (natural selection) just does not explain the evidence — then the flip side of that is, well, things appear designed because they are designed.”
    Richard Sternberg – Living Waters documentary
    Whale Evolution vs. Population Genetics – Richard Sternberg and Paul Nelson – (excerpt from Living Waters video)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0csd3M4bc0Q

    Moreover, it is also worth pointing out that chance is not the cause of anything but is only a place holder for ignorance.

    Charles Darwin himself admitted as much.

    “I have hitherto sometimes spoken as if the variations—so common and multiform in organic beings under domestication, and in a lesser degree in those in a state of nature—had been due to chance. This, of course, is a wholly incorrect expression, but it serves to acknowledge plainly our ignorance of the cause of each particular variation.”
    Charles Darwin – Origin – Chapter V

    The word ‘chance’, as it is used by Darwinists, is not an appeal to any known mathematical probability, or to any known cause in physics, but is, in reality, simply a placeholder for ignorance.

    As Pauli himself explained, “they (Darwinists) use the word ‘chance’, not any longer combined with estimations of a mathematically defined probability, in its application to very rare single events more or less synonymous with the old word ‘miracle.’

    Pauli’s ideas on mind and matter in the context of contemporary science – Harald Atmanspacher
    Excerpt: “In discussions with biologists I met large difficulties when they apply the concept of ‘natural selection’ in a rather wide field, without being able to estimate the probability of the occurrence in a empirically given time of just those events, which have been important for the biological evolution. Treating the empirical time scale of the evolution theoretically as infinity they have then an easy game, apparently to avoid the concept of purposesiveness. While they pretend to stay in this way completely ‘scientific’ and ‘rational,’ they become actually very irrational, particularly because they use the word ‘chance’, not any longer combined with estimations of a mathematically defined probability, in its application to very rare single events more or less synonymous with the old word ‘miracle.’”
    Wolfgang Pauli (pp. 27-28)
    https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/234f/4989e039089fed5ac47c7d1a19b656c602e2.pdf

    Yet Darwinists act as if ‘chance’ is a cause unto itself.

    As Robert C. Sproul pointed out: “By calling the unknown cause ‘chance’ for so long, people begin to forget that a substitution was made. . . . The assumption that ‘chance equals an unknown cause’ has come to mean for many that ‘chance equals cause.’

    What Is Chance? – Nicholas Nurston
    Excerpt: “The vague word ‘chance’ is used as a substitute for a more precise word such as ’cause’. “To personify ‘chance’ as if we were talking about a causal agent,” notes biophysicist Donald M. MacKay, “is to make an illegitimate switch from a scientific to a quasi-religious mythological concept.”
    Similarly, Robert C. Sproul points out: “By calling the unknown cause ‘chance’ for so long, people begin to forget that a substitution was made. . . . The assumption that ‘chance equals an unknown cause’ has come to mean for many that ‘chance equals cause.’” Others who reasoned in this fashion, Nobel laureate Jacques Monod, for one, used this chance equals cause line of reasoning. “Pure chance, absolutely free but blind, (is) at the root of the stupendous edifice of evolution,”…
    https://books.google.com/books?id=bQ5OAAAAQBAJ&pg=PT25&lpg=PT25

    Thus, for Darwinists, via neutral theory, to appeal to chance alone, (minus natural selection), for the ‘appearance of design’ that we see in life, is, in reality, for them to appeal to their own ignorance of the known cause for that ‘appearance of design’.

  7. 7
    bornagain77 says:

    Moreover, because of the mathematics of population genetics, Larry Moran insists that not only is some negligible amount of the genome to be considered junk, but he argues instead that the vast majority, i.e. 90%, of DNA must be junk:

    Revisiting the genetic load argument with Dan Graur – Larry Moran – July 14, 2017
    Excerpt: I’ve discussed genetic load several times on this blog (e.g. Genetic Load, Neutral Theory, and Junk DNA) but a recent paper by Dan Graur provides a good opportunity to explain it once more. The basic idea of Genetic Load is that a population can only tolerate a finite number of deleterious mutations before going extinct. The theory is sound but many of the variables are not known with precision.,,,
    Let’s look at the first line in this table. The deleterious mutation rate is calculated using the lowest possible mutation rate and the smallest percentage of deleterious mutations (4%). Under these conditions, the human population could survive with a fertility value of 1.8 as long as less than 25% of the genome is functional (i.e. 75% junk) (red circle). That’s the UPPER LIMIT on the functional fraction of the human genome.
    But that limit is quite unreasonable. It’s more reasonable to assume about 100 new mutations per generation with about 10% deleterious. Using these assumptions, only 10% of the genome could be functional with a fertility value of 1.8 (green circle).
    Whatever the exact percentage of junk DNA it’s clear that the available data and population genetics point to a genome that’s mostly junk DNA.
    http://sandwalk.blogspot.com/2.....-with.html

    That belief that 90% of the human genome is junk just strikes me as being completely absurd right off the bat, but anyways, I hold Moran’s calculation to be flawed in regards to the empirical evidence we now have in hand.

    I hold Moran’s 10% estimate for deleterious mutations, that he used in his calculation in the preceding paper, to be far too conservative, and thus the percentage of junk DNA, according to his own calculation, should actually be much higher than his 90% estimate,,,

    As Michael Behe stated in the following paper,, we had already known that the great majority of mutations that have a visible effect on an organism are deleterious. Now, surprisingly, it seems that even the great majority of helpful mutations degrade the genome to a greater or lesser extent

    “The First Rule of Adaptive Evolution”: Break or blunt any functional coded element whose loss would yield a net fitness gain – Michael Behe – December 2010
    Excerpt: In its most recent issue The Quarterly Review of Biology has published a review by myself of laboratory evolution experiments of microbes going back four decades.,,, The gist of the paper is that so far the overwhelming number of adaptive (that is, helpful) mutations seen in laboratory evolution experiments are either loss or modification of function. Of course we had already known that the great majority of mutations that have a visible effect on an organism are deleterious. Now, surprisingly, it seems that even the great majority of helpful mutations degrade the genome to a greater or lesser extent.,,, I dub it “The First Rule of Adaptive Evolution”: Break or blunt any functional coded element whose loss would yield a net fitness gain.
    – per uncommon descent

    Moreover, as John Sanford showed in his book Genetic Entropy and the following paper, the unselectable ‘near neutral’ mutations, which Dr Moran classified as perfectly neutral in his calculation, should, in reality, all be classified as slightly deleterious mutations that will build up over time, instead of being classified as perfectly neutral mutations as Dr. Moran erroneously classified them as being in his calculation.,,,

    Can Purifying Natural Selection Preserve Biological Information? – May 2013 –
    Paul Gibson, John R. Baumgardner, Wesley H. Brewer, John C. Sanford
    In conclusion, numerical simulation shows that realistic levels of biological noise result in a high selection threshold. This results in the ongoing accumulation of low-impact deleterious mutations, with deleterious mutation count per individual increasing linearly over time. Even in very long experiments (more than 100,000 generations), slightly deleterious alleles accumulate steadily, causing eventual extinction. These findings provide independent validation of previous analytical and simulation studies [2–13]. Previous concerns about the problem of accumulation of nearly neutral mutations are strongly supported by our analysis. Indeed, when numerical simulations incorporate realistic levels of biological noise, our analyses indicate that the problem is much more severe than has been acknowledged, and that the large majority of deleterious mutations become invisible to the selection process.,,,
    http://www.worldscientific.com.....08728_0010

    Kimura’s Distribution
    http://dl0.creation.com/articl.....-white.jpg

    Correct Distribution
    http://dl0.creation.com/articl.....-white.jpg

    Thus, even though Larry Moran used unrealistic estimates for deleterious mutations in his calculation, Moran was still only able to calculate that 10% of the genome may be functional.

    Yet, the fact of the matter is that if realistic estimates are used for ‘slightly deleterious mutations’ in the calculations then ALL, i.e. 100%, of the genome should be functionless junk, instead of just 90%.

    My question for Darwinists is this, does even the 0% functionality predicted for the genome from population genetics falsify Darwinian evolution in your minds?

    If not, what in the world would ever possibly falsify Darwinian evolution in your minds?

    if your theory does not have a specific criteria for potential falsification via mathematics and empirical testing, then it is not a real science and “it does not speak about reality.”

    “In so far as a scientific statement speaks about reality, it must be falsifiable; and in so far as it is not falsifiable, it does not speak about reality.”
    Karl Popper

    Moreover I remind people that these leading Darwinists (Moran and Graur) insisted that most of the genome must be junk in spite of overwhelming empirical evidence to the contrary from ENCODE, and from many other sources

    Junk No More: ENCODE Project Nature Paper Finds “Biochemical Functions for 80% of the Genome” – Casey Luskin – September 5, 2012
    Excerpt: The Discover Magazine article further explains that the rest of the 20% of the genome is likely to have function as well:
    “And what’s in the remaining 20 percent? Possibly not junk either, according to Ewan Birney, the project’s Lead Analysis Coordinator and self-described “cat-herder-in-chief”. He explains that ENCODE only (!) looked at 147 types of cells, and the human body has a few thousand. A given part of the genome might control a gene in one cell type, but not others. If every cell is included, functions may emerge for the phantom proportion. “It’s likely that 80 percent will go to 100 percent,” says Birney. “We don’t really have any large chunks of redundant DNA. This metaphor of junk isn’t that useful.””
    We will have more to say about this blockbuster paper from ENCODE researchers in coming days, but for now, let’s simply observe that it provides a stunning vindication of the prediction of intelligent design that the genome will turn out to have mass functionality for so-called “junk” DNA. ENCODE researchers use words like “surprising” or “unprecedented.” They talk about of how “human DNA is a lot more active than we expected.” But under an intelligent design paradigm, none of this is surprising. In fact, it is exactly what ID predicted.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....64001.html

    New Book on “Junk DNA” Surveys the Functions of Non-Coding DNA – April 29, 2015
    Excerpt: Carey,, goes on to explain how today we now believe that, far from being irrelevant, it’s the “junk DNA” that is running the whole show:
    “The other shock from the sequencing of the human genome was the realisation that the extraordinary complexities of human anatomy, physiology, intelligence and behaviour cannot be explained by referring to the classical model of genes. In terms of numbers of genes that code for proteins, humans contain pretty much the same quantity (around 20,000) as simple microscopic worms. Even more remarkably, most of the genes in the worms have directly equivalent genes in humans.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....95611.html

    Thus in conclusion, although Larry Moran and Dan Graur may personally find the genetic load argument to be a powerful argument for considering the vast majority of the human genome to be junk, the fact of the matter is that the genetic load argument is much more effectively used against the validity of Darwinian evolution itself.

    As Dr. John Sanford stated, “Kimura apparently never considered his cost arguments could most rationally be used to argue against the Axiom’s (neo-Darwinism’s) very validity.”

    Kimura’s Quandary
    Excerpt: Kimura realized that Haldane was correct,,, He developed his neutral theory in response to this overwhelming evolutionary problem. Paradoxically, his theory led him to believe that most mutations are unselectable, and therefore,,, most ‘evolution’ must be independent of selection! Because he was totally committed to the primary axiom (neo-Darwinism), Kimura apparently never considered his cost arguments could most rationally be used to argue against the Axiom’s (neo-Darwinism’s) very validity.
    John Sanford PhD. – “Genetic Entropy and The Mystery of the Genome” – pg. 161 – 162 – 2005

    Verse

    1 Thessalonians 5:21
    but test all things. Hold fast to what is good.

  8. 8
    bornagain77 says:

    Seversky, since you believe, via your Darwinian worldview, that the vast majority of non-protein-coding DNA must be junk, does this recent headline by News, “Discovery Of Useful “Junk DNA” “Has Outstripped The Discovery Of Protein-Coding Genes By A Factor Of Five”, even bother you?

    A normal person who is not religiously committed to Darwinism, as you are, would find that headline to be particularly troublesome for the Darwinian belief that the vast majority of non-protein-coding DNA must be junk, why don’t you?

    From the paper,

    “With the HGP (Human Genome Project) draft in hand, the discovery of non-protein-coding elements exploded. So far, that growth has outstripped the discovery of protein-coding genes by a factor of five, and shows no signs of slowing. Likewise, the number of publications about such elements also grew in the period covered by our data set. For example, there are thousands of papers on non-coding RNAs, which regulate gene expression.”
    – Nature – “A wealth of discovery built on the Human Genome Project — by the numbers” – Feb. 2021 –
    Alexander J. Gates, Deisy Morselli Gysi, Manolis Kellis & Albert-László Barabási,
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/discovery-of-useful-junk-dna-has-outstripped-the-discovery-of-protein-coding-genes-by-a-factor-of-five/#respond

  9. 9
    ET says:

    Both seversky and Larry Moran are clueless. The spooling around histone octamers is evidence against a preponderance of junk DNA. All they have to try to explain it is evolution magically produced it to spool up and organize the junk and functional parts of the genomes.

    These people can’t think beyond their own thick skulls.

  10. 10
    Querius says:

    Darwinism presupposes random mutations as the cause for all biological diversity, therefore there’s a presumption of “junk” that poisons scientific inquiry. An evolutionary scientist finds something new and immediately labels it “junk” that’s not worthy of further investigation and once again “proves” Darwinism.

    At least Susumu Ohno suggested further investigation into what we now know as non-coding DNA.

    Similarly, at the Scopes “monkey” trial in 1925, eminent scientists assured the court that there are most certainly 180 or more vestigial (i.e. junk) organs left over from evolutionary processes that “proves” Darwinism. We should certainly follow science . . . except when it falsifies the bastion of racism and eugenics of colonialism that still somehow survives.

    Someday, I hope to see Charles Darwin’s cold, dead fingers pried off the throat of free scientific inquiry.

    -Q

  11. 11
    Seversky says:

    The Myth of Junk DNA by Jonathan Wells

    This is the final installment of my review of The Myth of Junk DNA by Jonathan Wells (Discovery Institute Press, 2011). The other posts are listed at the bottom of this summary and in the theme posting “Genomes & Junk DNA.”

    Most of the IDiots at the Discovery Institute feel threatened by the existence of large amounts of junk DNA in some eukaryotic genomes, including our own. That’s why they are determined to refute this idea by showing that most putative junk DNA actually has a function. Jonathan Wells feels confident enough about his reading of the scientific literature to announce that junk DNA is a “myth” and he’s written a book to promote this idea.

    Wells never defines “junk DNA” correctly. The correct definition of “junk” is DNA that has no known function. Wells pretends that the original definition of junk DNA was “noncoding” DNA. Thus, all those bits of noncoding DNA that have a function are evidence that refutes the notion of junk DNA.

    The truth is that no knowledgeable scientist ever suggested that regulatory regions, origins of replication, centromeres, telomeres, genes that produce functional RNA molecules, and chromatin organizing regions were ever classified as junk DNA. They all knew that there was lots of noncoding DNA that had a well-defined function. Right from the beginning of his book, Wells is attacking a strawman and misleading his readers.

    That’s not the only example of deception. Wells also claims that the existence of large amounts of junk DNA was a prediction of Darwinism and is promoted as proof of Darwinian evolution. This is a lie. Junk DNA actually represents a serious problem for Darwinism (evolution by natural selection) and it certainly was never “predicted” by adaptationists. Having set up this second strawman he proceeds to knock it down (in his mind) thus challenging the very idea of evolution.

    I believe that 90% of the human genome consists of junk DNA (DNA with no known function) [What’s in Your Genome]. There is excellent scientific evidence to support this claim but you won’t find very much of that evidence in The Myth of Junk DNA.1 Instead, you’ll find after page of page of evidence that tiny bits of DNA here and there in various species have a function that we may not have known about twenty years ago. If you add up all the little bits, it doesn’t amount to more than a few percent of the genome.

    Theme

    Almost 50% of our genome consists of defective transposons and viruses (junk) but Wells never tells his readers why that huge amount of DNA has a function.

    There are many scientists who don’t believe that most of our genome is junk. I think it’s fair to say that the consensus is swinging against them. More and more scientists are starting to accept the idea that junk DNA is supported by evidence and, more importantly, consistent with modern evolutionary theory. Wells gives the opposite impression in his book and he goes out of his way to discredit the reputations of scientists who disagree with him.

    The really sad thing about this book is that it could have discussed a real scientific controversy and presented both sides of the scientific case, for and against junk DNA. It’s the same problem that we saw in Wells’ first book, Icons of Evolution: Science or Myth?. Instead of discussing genuine scientific controversies, Wells chooses to misrepresent science in order to discredit evolution and impugn the reputations of “Darwinists.”

    Jonathan, Moonies, and Junk DNA
    Junk & Jonathan: Part I—Getting the History Correct
    Junk & Jonathan: Part 2— What Did Biologists Really Say About Junk DNA?
    Junk & Jonathan: Part 3—The Preface
    Junk & Jonathan: Part 4—Chapter 1
    Junk & Jonathan: Part 5—Chapter 2
    Junk & Jonathan: Part 6—Chapter 3
    Junk & Jonathan: Part 7—Chapter 4
    Junk & Jonathan: Part 8—Chapter 5
    Junk & Jonathan: Part 9—Chapter 6
    Junk & Jonathan: Part 10—Chapter 7
    Junk & Jonathan: Part 11—Chapter 8
    Junk & Jonathan: Part 12—Chapter 9
    Junk & Jonathan: Part 13—Chapter 10

    1. The genetic load argument is never mentioned. The significance of the C-value “paradox” is never explained. Evidence for the defective nature of pseudogenes isn’t presented. Variation in deletions and insertions within a species isn’t discussed. No interpretation of gene replacement and knockout experiments in mice is given. The nature of modern evolutionary theory is ignored.

  12. 12
    ET says:

    Histone octamers for spooling the DNA is evidence against the junk DNA argument. So I understand why the willfully ignorant ignore it.

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