Intelligent Design

Finally – Proof of Evolution

Spread the love

It’s all over now. Evolution has been proven. I’ll get me coat…

Earth’s Original Ancestor Was ‘LUCA’

ScienceDaily (Dec. 19, 2008) — An evolutionary geneticist from the Université de Montréal, together with researchers from the French cities of Lyon and Montpellier, have published a ground-breaking study that characterizes the common ancestor of all life on earth, LUCA (Last Universal Common Ancestor).

Their findings, presented in a recent issue of Nature, show that the 3.8-billion-year-old organism was not the creature usually imagined.

The study changes ideas of early life on Earth. “It is generally believed that LUCA was a heat-loving or hyperthermophilic organism. A bit like one of those weird organisms living in the hot vents along the continental ridges deep in the oceans today (above 90 degrees Celsius),” says Nicolas Lartillot, the study’s co-author and a bio-informatics professor at the Université de Montréal. “However, our data suggests that LUCA was actually sensitive to warmer temperatures and lived in a climate below 50 degrees.”

The research team compared genetic information from modern organisms to characterize the ancient ancestor of all life on earth. “Our research is much like studying the etymology of modern languages so as to reveal fundamental things about their evolution,” says professor Lartillot. “We identified common genetic traits between animals, plant, bacteria, and used them to create a tree of life with branches representing separate species. These all stemmed from the same trunk – LUCA, the genetic makeup that we then further characterized.”

Reconciling conflicting data

The group’s findings are an important step towards reconciling conflicting ideas about LUCA. In particular, they are much more compatible with the theory of an early RNA world, where early life on Earth was composed of ribonucleic acid (RNA), rather than deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA).

However, RNA is particularly sensitive to heat and is unlikely to be stable in the hot temperatures of the early Earth. The data of Dr. Lartillot with his collaborators indicate that LUCA found a cooler micro-climate to develop, which helps resolve this paradox and shows that environmental micro domains played a critical role in the development of life on Earth.

From RNA to DNA: Proof of evolution

“It is only in a subsequent step that LUCA’s descendants discovered the more thermostable DNA molecule, which they independently acquired (presumably from viruses), and used to replace the old and fragile RNA vehicle. This invention allowed them to move away from the small cool microclimate, evolved and diversify into a variety of sophisticated organisms that could tolerate heat,” adds Dr. Lartillot.

17 Replies to “Finally – Proof of Evolution

  1. 1
    bornagain77 says:

    Dang Dave; How could all the eggheads here at UD have missed this,,,Oh Well,,,Guess a lot of apologies will be in order…So are you going to hang out at Panda’s Thumb or PZ’s blog now?

  2. 2
    GilDodgen says:

    “It is only in a subsequent step that LUCA’s descendants discovered the more thermostable DNA molecule, which they independently acquired (presumably from viruses), and used to replace the old and fragile RNA vehicle. This invention allowed them to move away from the small cool microclimate, evolve and diversify into a variety of sophisticated organisms that could tolerate heat,” adds Dr. Lartillot.

    Note the emphasized verbs in the paragraph above. The language used in these “scientific” papers on evolution is revealing. Conjecture and storytelling are always presented as statements of fact.

    This approach would sure make my aerospace R&D and engineering work easier. I could just make up a story about how an airdrop guidance system would work, present it as fact, and avoid all the hard analysis, design, and testing required to demonstrate that it will actually work the way I claim it will.

    This should be an embarrassment for a supposedly prestigious science publication like Nature, because the next time around, someone else will publish statements of fact that contradict these statements of fact. The bizarre thing is, no one will ever call any of the authors on this obvious nonsense.

  3. 3
    GilDodgen says:

    “It is only in a subsequent step that LUCA’s descendants discovered… This invention allowed them…

    P.S.: Speaking of language use, note the design terms.

  4. 4

    Wait, if I plot a bunch of points, then draw lines between them in a certain way, I can get the lines to converge near a general area?

    That evolutionary biologist thing sounds like a much better gig than the jobs I’ve had. Just wait until I pull out the old Spirograph and show those boys stuff that’ll blow their minds!

  5. 5
    Borne says:

    From Montreal eh? Figures. They’re way gullible.

    They also eat poutine – which tastes great but has all the nutritional qualities of a pound of butter.

    That explains this. Fat heads with great imaginations looking for fortune and glory.

  6. 6
    gpuccio says:

    Very amusing.

    “It is only in a subsequent step that LUCA’s descendants discovered the more thermostable DNA molecule, which they independently acquired (presumably from viruses), and used to replace the old and fragile RNA vehicle.”

    Just two questions:

    1) I am really intrigued about how those imaginary RNA beings would have acquired “independently” (whatever it means) the DNA molecule “from viruses”. Maybe I should read the article. But I can appreciate creativity when I see it.

    2) A question I have already made (but nobody apparently answered). We have the information in the RNA beings, haven’t we? That information is certainly made of RNA genes (let’s say a few hundred) which code for ribozymes, functional molecules made of nucleotides which have all the roles which in the future will be of proteins, and which make life possible. OK with that?

    But then, our RNAers (allow me the word) get lucky: they receive “the DNA molecule” from viruses. And, I suppose, they transfer all their information on DNA, just as we pass our movies from tape to DVD, eager to profit of the new technology.

    And so, if I am not wrong, the new DNAers can proudly start synthesizing their proteins, and… but wait a moment, which proteins?

    After all, the information transferred from RNA to DNA was for ribozymes: the precious functional molecules were made of nucleotides. And now?

    Now the new beings are really in trouble: DNA is not a functional molecule, so the old functions cannot be carried out by it. So, DNA could go on synthesizing rybozimes. And the proteins?

    But the information for the proteins is not there. It should be based on a completely different code, and would be completely different: aminoacids are not nucleotides, and a ribozyme and a protein are completely different molecules, even if they carry on the same function.

    Ah, but I am probably hypercritical. It is obvious that the new DNAers went on synthesizing rybozimes, and transmitting the information for them, while at the same time, through the wonderful process of gene duplication, random mutation and natural selection, they generated the new code and the new information for proteins for the same functions carried on until then by ribozymes, and when everything was ready, they gradually (and cautiously, one can never know) dismissed the old genes for ribozymes, and could happily enjoy their new status of DNA-protein beings and evolve further (even accumulating a 98.5% junk genome in the meantime, just to prove that evolution is real).

    Is that good? Am I a clever darwinist now? 🙂

  7. 7
    tragicmishap says:

    Let’s deal with all the trivial problems before the smart guy stuff. Please for my sake.

    ““However, our data suggests that LUCA was actually sensitive to warmer temperatures and lived in a climate below 50 degrees.””

    Was Nick Matzke in on this article? 😀

  8. 8
    tribune7 says:

    Is that good? Am I a clever darwinist now?
    LOL. Great summation, gpuccio.
    But Darwinism must be true because, because, because, because why exactly?

  9. 9
    bornagain77 says:

    gpuccio,
    I’m thinking, while I’m reading your post, boy gpuccio must ruin a lot of TV and movies for his family by asking penetrating questions of the plot LOL…True no?

  10. 10
    gpuccio says:

    tribune7:

    Never ask exact questions, please…

    bornagain:

    Absolutely not! I am a true cinéphile! I cannot stand anybody talking (including me) while we are seeing a movie. 🙂

  11. 11
    bFast says:

    Hey Dave. Nice post. I introduced this thing a few days ago in O’Leary’s “When reporters write what they “know””. Did you get it from there or did you find it on your own. If you raised it to an actual post — thanks.

    The more I look at this article the more I believe that the wonderful slaying of ID was actually a discovery that an RNA world could not be considered in a hot environment. In other words, this is a falsification of a few hot-environment theories, like “deep sea vents”.

    As far as the slamming that ID got by the PhysOrg posters, well, these guys generally seem to think that anything that supports universal common descent contradicts ID. In honesty, I have been unimpressed with the quality of the posters on PhysOrg.

  12. 12
    bFast says:

    Oh, hey, you got this from ScienceDaily. I found it on physorg.com. I’ll have to read the bright blogging at science daily.

  13. 13
    Borne says:

    tribune7

    But Darwinism must be true because, because, because, because why exactly?

    because of the wonderful things it does.

    We’re off to see the wizard!
    The old dude behind the curtain pulling the strings.

  14. 14
    tribune7 says:

    because of the wonderful things it does.

    LOLOLOL

  15. 15
    Domoman says:

    Gpuccio,

    I’d like you to ask those questions to some origin of life researchers. lol It’d be funny to see what they said and/or their reactions.

  16. 16
    pmob1 says:

    LUCA was a heat-loving or hyperthermophilic organism.

    Ahhh, I thought so all along.
    Gore and the Greens are not human.
    Alien implants. Will destroy
    civilization; replace with dreaded
    grant-hustling strain.

  17. 17
    niteflyer says:

    can anyone here show me the peer reviewed science which claims to PROVE macro evolution? oh wait thats right… IT DOESNT EXIST!… the absolute best you can come up with is that micro SOMEHOW leads to macro because evolution is a religion of ignorance based entirely on idiotic observations and BELIEF

Leave a Reply