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Junk DNA watch: Alus can have their memory re-programmed on several levels

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From Sal Cordova at Creation-Evolution Headlines:

Chris Rupe co-authored the book Contested Bones with John Sanford to tell about the inadequate evidence for human evolution. The book is almost entirely about bones and the fossil record, but there are 3 pages in that book that refute claims by evolutionary biologists that the human genome is badly designed because of repetitive DNA elements known as Alus.

Some 10-11% of the human genome is composed of repeats of specific 300-base pattern called an Alu. Evolutionists claim this is bad design. Their reasoning goes something like this: ‘You only need one copy of a phone book in a house, maybe a few at most, certainly not millions of copies. Therefore the 1 million copies of Alus in the human genome is worthless junk. It doesn’t even code for something. Therefore Alus are bad design. Since it’s bad design, there is no reason to believe there is an Intelligent Designer.”

The statement is a macro, Sal: The Darwinian types a few keys and hits the space bar and then his whole argument for junk DNA suddenly creates and assembles itself without any intelligent input at all. You’re never going to convince him that all of nature doesn’t work the same way…

It turns out the Alu DNA, like identical copies of computers in a server farm, can have their memory re-programmed on several levels. When Alus are transcribed, they have editable sites that act somewhat like RAM (random access memory) or EPROM (erasable programmable memory). Rupe’s book quotes two papers in support of this idea.

I did a back-of-the-envelope calculation, and if each brain cell has a hundred million such Alu binary bits, and if each brain has 100 billion cells, then that about 1019 bits of memory! That is staggering, and that is consistent with the claim that the human brain has more connections than all the routers on the World Wide Web! More.

Note: Cordova contributed to the Alu research

See also: Viruses hijack “junk” (non-coding) RNA, turns out many non-coding functions “have not been identified”

Rob Sheldon on the battle underlying “junk DNA”


Junk DNA: Dan Graur (junk!), ENCODE team (not junk!), and the science media

A video review of the book by Paul Giem:

2 Replies to “Junk DNA watch: Alus can have their memory re-programmed on several levels

  1. 1
    bornagain77 says:

    Review of “Contested Bones” (Part 1 – Prologue and Chapter 1 “Power of the Paradigm”) – video –

    12:37 minute Quote: “In 1965, natural history painter Rudolph Zallinger created the most famous icon of evolution – the “march of Progress.” The illustration was a foldout in the Time-Life Nature Library book, “Early Man”.2 It portrays a series of alleged ape-like ancestors that become progressively more human as they march across the page. Interestingly, the figure’s caption cautioned readers that the artistic representations were based upon “fragmentary fossil evidence.”,,, The book freely confesses: “Although protoapes and apes were quadrupedal, all are shown here standing for the purpose of comparison.”,,, the transitional forms existed primarily in the artist’s mind.,, most people ignored the fine print.”
    16:43 minute Quote: “The power of the (ape to man) graphic has been strongly reinforced by sporadic headlines proclaiming important new fossil evidence,,, Very few people are aware that virtually every “ape-man” bone has been contested by experts in the field.”

  2. 2
    aarceng says:

    … about 10^19 bits of memory!

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