29 Replies to “More Signs of Design: Bacteria on the Radio

  1. 1
    bornagain77 says:

    as been said before, Another day, Another very bad day for neo-Darwinists!

  2. 2
    Mung says:

    And if you drop the radio in a chlorine pool?

  3. 3
    DrREC says:

    Interesting paper. Maybe someone with an engineering background can help me out with this one. It seems like the paper considers DNA to be an extended circle. The length given to get the frequencies is:

    “For harmless E. Coli K-12 bacteria the loop length is
    4,639,221 bp or in absolute length units
    L = 0.157733514 cm”

    I can almost imagine a circular HAM radio antenna:

    But in cells, the DNA is all balled up. Bacteria are only about 2 microns, hundreds of times smaller then the calculated loop, and their DNA looks like this:


    Ignoring whether electrons would actually complete loops around that (especially with all associated proteins), wouldn’t there be a bit of an issue with directionality/magnetic moment?

  4. 4
    bornagain77 says:

    DrREC; you inquire as to;

    ‘wouldn’t there be a bit of an issue with directionality/magnetic moment?’

    This question of yours reflects something that neo-Darwinism, your belief system, has a extremely hard (impossible) time explaining. There are many, many sorts of problems, like the one you have wondered about, that have to be worked out to accomplish the unparalleled complexity of what we witness in life, and yet many times, when scientists finally do figure out the ‘nuts and bolts’, the scientists find out that the problems are worked out in a far more elegant manner than human engineers have yet devised, or can even yet devise; for instance;

    Life Leads the Way to Invention – Feb. 2010
    Excerpt: a cell is 10,000 times more energy-efficient than a transistor. “ In one second, a cell performs about 10 million energy-consuming chemical reactions, which altogether require about one picowatt (one millionth millionth of a watt) of power.” This and other amazing facts lead to an obvious conclusion: inventors ought to look to life for ideas.,,, Essentially, cells may be viewed as circuits that use molecules, ions, proteins and DNA instead of electrons and transistors. That analogy suggests that it should be possible to build electronic chips – what Sarpeshkar calls “cellular chemical computers” – that mimic chemical reactions very efficiently and on a very fast timescale.

    Do you believe Richard Dawkins exists?
    Excerpt: DNA is the best information storage mechanism known to man. A single pinhead of DNA contains as much information as could be stored on 2 million two-terabyte hard drives.

    3-D Structure Of Human Genome: Fractal Globule Architecture Packs Two Meters Of DNA Into Each Cell – Oct. 2009
    Excerpt: the information density in the nucleus is trillions of times higher than on a computer chip — while avoiding the knots and tangles that might interfere with the cell’s ability to read its own genome. Moreover, the DNA can easily unfold and refold during gene activation, gene repression, and cell replication.

    Bill Gates, in recognizing the superiority found in Genetic Coding compared to the best computer coding we now have, has now funded research into this area:

    Welcome to CoSBi – (Computational and Systems Biology)
    Excerpt: Biological systems are the most parallel systems ever studied and we hope to use our better understanding of how living systems handle information to design new computational paradigms, programming languages and software development environments. The net result would be the design and implementation of better applications firmly grounded on new computational, massively parallel paradigms in many different areas.

    Nanoelectronic Transistor Combined With Biological Machine Could Lead To Better Electronics: – Aug. 2009
    Excerpt: While modern communication devices rely on electric fields and currents to carry the flow of information, biological systems are much more complex. They use an arsenal of membrane receptors, channels and pumps to control signal transduction that is unmatched by even the most powerful computers.

    Systems biology: Untangling the protein web – July 2009
    Excerpt: Vidal thinks that technological improvements — especially in nanotechnology, to generate more data, and microscopy, to explore interaction inside cells, along with increased computer power — are required to push systems biology forward. “Combine all this and you can start to think that maybe some of the information flow can be captured,” he says. But when it comes to figuring out the best way to explore information flow in cells, Tyers jokes that it is like comparing different degrees of infinity. “The interesting point coming out of all these studies is how complex these systems are — the different feedback loops and how they cross-regulate each other and adapt to perturbations are only just becoming apparent,” he says. “The simple pathway models are a gross oversimplification of what is actually happening.”

    Also of interest is that a cell apparently seems to be successfully designed along the very stringent guidelines laid out by Landauer’s principle of ‘reversible computation’ in order to achieve such amazing energy efficiency, something man has yet to accomplish in any meaningful way for computers:

    Notes on Landauer’s principle, reversible computation, and Maxwell’s Demon – Charles H. Bennett
    Excerpt: Of course, in practice, almost all data processing is done on macroscopic apparatus, dissipating macroscopic amounts of energy far in excess of what would be required by Landauer’s principle. Nevertheless, some stages of biomolecular information processing, such as transcription of DNA to RNA, appear to be accomplished by chemical reactions that are reversible not only in principle but in practice.,,,,

    As well Quantum Information/Computation has recently been discover, on a massive scale of billions (trillions?) of cohered atoms, in life, something that man has yet to accomplish in any meaningful way of perhaps a dozen or so atoms/qubits, in even his most advanced attempts at quantum computation!!!;

    Quantum Information/Entanglement In DNA & Protein Folding – short video

    DrREC, you simply have to be blind to believe that all this is ‘cobbled together’ by Darwinian processes! Like I said earlier, neo-Darwinism is more of a dogmatic religion than any theistic religion I have ever seen for it requires far more blind faith!

  5. 5
    DrREC says:

    “This question of yours reflects something that neo-Darwinism, your belief system, has a extremely hard (impossible) time explaining.”

    Did I mention neo-Darwinism or Evolution in my post?

    My skepticism towards this claim has nothing to do with evolution. Indeed, the way you portray it, wouldn’t a totally non-skeptical hard-core evolutionary biologist simply believe this system evolved?

    Rather, my skepticism is directed at the equations and premises of this paper-namely that it looks like the calculations assume totally extended circular DNA.

    I then asked any of our engineering friends if the geometry and compactness of the DNA in a prokaryote jives with this proposed function and the calculations in the paper.

    I’m actually interested in an answer to this. I think some visitors here probably know a lot more about antennas and such than I do.

    I’m not sure why every time I post, you feel the need to take the thread way off course.

  6. 6
    bornagain77 says:

    DrREC, since you have in fact defended the neo-Darwinian position on another thread, I treat you as such, if you are open to design I am pleased, but I will wait til I see more of your cards before I grant that you are anything more than a dogmatic neo-Darwinist. I’ve been burnt too many times before. You complain that I took the thread way off course, but the fact is that Design is continually being discovered in life that staggers the imagination, and easily surpasses anything man has ever devised. I merely drove this point home, as well as clearly illustrated the fact that none of this unparalleled complexity in life, including the radio signals which you seem to doubt the validity of, was remotely anticipated by the neo-Darwinian framework. What I find interesting is that most people would be very happy to learn of such unparalleled complexity, since they would be filled with wonder, but you accuse me of dragging the post off topic, though I was merely accentuating that this discovery falls in line with a ID perspective;


    Primary Cilium As Cellular ‘GPS System’ Crucial To Wound Repair
    Excerpt: The primary cilium, the solitary, antenna-like structure that studs the outer surfaces of virtually all human cells, orient cells to move in the right direction and at the speed needed to heal wounds, much like a Global Positioning System helps ships navigate to their destinations.
    “What we are dealing with is a physiological analogy to the GPS system with a coupled autopilot that coordinates air traffic or tankers on open sea,”

  7. 7
    DrREC says:

    “I will wait til I see more of your cards before I grant that you are anything more than a dogmatic neo-Darwinist.”

    I didn’t realize I had to pass a litmus test before asking you and your friends answer an engineering question.

    I think we could evaluate the claims of this paper based on its merits, without imposing dogma on it.

    Anyone who is interested can see my post at 2 above.

  8. 8
    bornagain77 says:

    DrREC, and if you don’t believe design is present when shown all these other examples of extremely advanced design, what is suppose to make me think you will suddenly be fair to the evidence if someone elucidates these radio signals for you???,,, To give a clear example as to why these (Radio signals) will not surprise me if they turn out to be true, as I fully expect them to, is that there are many ‘chemically impossible’ things that are happening in a cell that need an explanation. Things that are simply impossible to explain by a purely chemical (energy/matter) basis.

    Does DNA Have Telepathic Properties?-A Galaxy Insight

    Excerpt: DNA has been found to have a bizarre ability to put itself together, even at a distance, when according to known science it shouldn’t be able to. Explanation: None, at least not yet.,,, The recognition of similar sequences in DNA’s chemical subunits, occurs in a way unrecognized by science. There is no known reason why the DNA is able to combine the way it does, and from a current theoretical standpoint this feat should be chemically impossible.

    Quantum Dots Spotlight DNA-Repair Proteins in Motion – March 2010

    Excerpt: “How this system works is an important unanswered question in this field,” he said. “It has to be able to identify very small mistakes in a 3-dimensional morass of gene strands. It’s akin to spotting potholes on every street all over the country and getting them fixed before the next rush hour.” Dr. Bennett Van Houten – of note: A bacterium has about 40 team members on its pothole crew. That allows its entire genome to be scanned for errors in 20 minutes, the typical doubling time.,, These smart machines can apparently also interact with other damage control teams if they cannot fix the problem on the spot.

    In fact, recently, significant progress was made in elucidating quantum information/entanglement in molecular biology so as to give a plausible mechanism to explain some of these mysteries:

    Quantum Information/Entanglement In DNA & Protein Folding – short video

    ,,, If fact, it was thought that massive hot systems, at room temperature, far above absolute zero, with lots of ‘noise’, which is exactly what life is, were the worst possible places in the world to achieve massive quantum coherence. Thus they were very surprised to see that life ‘just so happens’ to make an exception to this rule.,,, And as pointed out before, Quantum information is not limited by any time-space constraints (A.Aspect) and is thus not explainable by the materialistic framework of neo-Darwinism in the first place, and must be explained by a cause that is itself not limited by time or space! Moreover, since quantum computation in molecular biology is truly a staggering feat of engineering, that our engineers within quantum computation can only drool over the complexity of, it only follows that this foundational level of ‘quantum information’ in life will accentuated by information processing on all other level following it, including electromagnetic signaling. To presuppose otherwise is to not fully appreciate the staggering level of complexity being dealt with;

    ‘The information content of a simple cell has been estimated as around 10^12 bits, comparable to about a hundred million pages of the Encyclopedia Britannica.”
    Carl Sagan, “Life” in Encyclopedia Britannica: Macropaedia (1974 ed.), pp. 893-894

    of note: The 10^12 bits of information number for a bacterium is derived from entropic considerations, which is, due to the tightly integrated relationship between information and entropy, considered the most accurate measure of the transcendent information present in a ‘simple’ life form. For calculations please see the following site:

    Molecular Biophysics – Information theory. Relation between information and entropy:


  9. 9
    DrREC says:

    “DrREC, and if you don’t believe design is present when shown all these other examples of extremely advanced design, what is suppose to make me think you will suddenly be fair to the evidence if someone elucidates these radio signals for you??”

    I’m still trying to decide whether the claims of the paper are true or not. The equations which consider an elongated circular DNA greater than the size of a bacterium, vacuum electrostatics, and so on seem dubious to me when applied to a living bacterium.

    So, I wanted to discuss them. I particularly would value an engineer’s opinion.

    As you seem to not only have accepted the findings, but have also found design in the system, could you describe how you reached these conclusions?

  10. 10
    bornagain77 says:

    DrREC, ‘As you seem to not only have accepted the findings, but have also found design in the system, could you describe how you reached these conclusions?’

    Can you please tell me exactly how you have reached the conclusion that life is not the product of superior design???

  11. 11
    DrREC says:

    “Can you please tell me exactly how you have reached the conclusion that life is not the product of superior design???”

    Have I stated that as a conclusion? Even if I thought it true, I have no idea how I would demonstrate that.

    This response is puerile. I ask specifics-how does the math in this paper work out, are the assumptions valid? Any engineers want to comment?

    You tell me bacteria are communicating by radio, and design is present in the system, and I ask how you know the paper is true (in light of what I think are some pretty odd assumptions), and how you’ve detected design.

    You don’t seen to have an answer, and suddenly, I’m supposed to rule out design from life? Remember that many have argued the design hypothesis is unfalsifiable. Others argue life is designed by natural selection acting on genetic diversity.

    Regardless, do you have anything meaningful to say about this paper or not?

  12. 12
    bornagain77 says:

    DrREC you state,

    ‘Remember that many have argued the design hypothesis is unfalsifiable.’

    Actually Intelligent Design is falsifiable,,

    The Law of Physicodynamic Insufficiency – Dr David L. Abel – November 2010
    Excerpt: “If decision-node programming selections are made randomly or by law rather than with purposeful intent, no non-trivial (sophisticated) function will spontaneously arise.”,,, After ten years of continual republication of the null hypothesis with appeals for falsification, no falsification has been provided. The time has come to extend this null hypothesis into a formal scientific prediction: “No non trivial algorithmic/computational utility will ever arise from chance and/or necessity alone.”

    The Capabilities of Chaos and Complexity: David L. Abel – Null Hypothesis For Information Generation – 2009
    To focus the scientific community’s attention on its own tendencies toward overzealous metaphysical imagination bordering on “wish-fulfillment,” we propose the following readily falsifiable null hypothesis, and invite rigorous experimental attempts to falsify it: “Physicodynamics cannot spontaneously traverse The Cybernetic Cut: physicodynamics alone cannot organize itself into formally functional systems requiring algorithmic optimization, computational halting, and circuit integration.” A single exception of non trivial, unaided spontaneous optimization of formal function by truly natural process would falsify this null hypothesis.
    Can We Falsify Any Of The Following Null Hypothesis (For Information Generation)
    1) Mathematical Logic
    2) Algorithmic Optimization
    3) Cybernetic Programming
    4) Computational Halting
    5) Integrated Circuits
    6) Organization (e.g. homeostatic optimization far from equilibrium)
    7) Material Symbol Systems (e.g. genetics)
    8 ) Any Goal Oriented bona fide system
    9) Language
    10) Formal function of any kind
    11) Utilitarian work

    Michael Behe on Falsifying Intelligent Design – video

    Genetic analysis of coordinate flagellar and type III – Scott Minnich and Stephen Meyer
    Molecular machines display a key signature or hallmark of design, namely, irreducible complexity. In all irreducibly complex systems in which the cause of the system is known by experience or observation, intelligent design or engineering played a role the origin of the system.

    Michael Behe Hasn’t Been Refuted on the Flagellum – March 2011

    As well DrREC, passing ‘the fitness test’ would go a long way towards falsifying Intelligent Design;

    Is Antibiotic Resistance evidence for evolution? – ‘The Fitness Test’ – video

    DrREC, if you falsify any of these, you, by default, go a long way to empirically establishing neo-Darwinism as scientifically legitimate instead of the scandalous tea-leaf reading enterprise it currently is.

    As well DrREC neo-Darwinism, as it is currently set up to reductive materialism, and although neo-Darwinists will never admit this, has already been falsified with the finding of Quantum entanglement/information in molecular biology.

    The Failure Of Local Realism – Materialism – Alain Aspect – video

    ,,,,So DrREC, contrary to your statement of unfalsifiability, there are strict guidelines in play.

    As to the paper, I am satisfied that they have detected radio waves, and though I am not currently satisfied as to their empirical approach of concretely establishing the validity of the source of the radio waves, I do believe they have made a significant first step as to elucidating a ‘sufficient cause’ to many unsolved mysteries in life;

  13. 13
    Mung says:

    Ignoring whether electrons would actually complete loops around that (especially with all associated proteins), wouldn’t there be a bit of an issue with directionality/magnetic moment?

    Good question. Sadly I’m not that kind of engineer.

    …electromagnetic signals hold true for muck lower frequencies…

    But my mother was an English teacher, and I hope someone fixes this typo. HT: MOM!

    But there’s nothing impossible in principle is there, with electromagnetic to chemical? Doesn’t that go on in our brains all the time?

    I loved this part:

    There is considerable work required to extract the bioinformation contained in these electromagnetic signals.

    You don’t say.

  14. 14
    bornagain77 says:

    OT: Stephen Meyer video – teaching from the presuppositional approach about morality’s necessity for Theism;

    Morality Presupposes Theism (1 of 4)

  15. 15
    paragwinn says:


    It’s called ‘electromagnetism’. Please look into it.


  16. 16
    bornagain77 says:

    paragwinn you state;

    It’s called ‘electromagnetism’. Please look into it.

    And I failed this distinction how?

  17. 17
  18. 18
    bornagain77 says:

    of related note;

    ,,,These specific frequencies of light (that enable plants to manufacture food and astronomers to observe the cosmos) represent less than 1 trillionth of a trillionth (10^-24) of the universe’s entire range of electromagnetic emissions. Like water, visible light also appears to be of optimal biological utility (Denton; Nature’s Destiny).

    Fine Tuning Of Universal Constants, Particularly Light – Walter Bradley – video

    Fine Tuning Of Light to the Atmosphere, to Biological Life, and to Water – graphs

  19. 19
    paragwinn says:


    It appeared you were having difficulty with addressing DrREC’s main area of concern, which really had nothing to do with neo-darwinism or evolution or teleology.

  20. 20
    bornagain77 says:

    paragwinn, first you falsely say that I used electromagnetic radiation in the wrong context, now you switch tactics? And exactly what are your presuppositions in this matter??? Are you presupposing it to be plausible or not??? Myself, since they have in fact measured radio waves, which are part of the electro magnetic spectrum, I am very confident that the bacteria are using radio waves for some purpose, but as I stated earlier, I am not completely satisfied to their empirics as to nailing down the source of the radio waves!

  21. 21
    paragwinn says:

    bornagain77 @ 20:
    “I am not completely satisfied to their empirics as to nailing down the source of the radio waves!”

    so, looking at this from a strictly engineering concern, without the need to refer to neo-Darwinism or evolution or teleology?

  22. 22
    bornagain77 says:

    paragwinn you state;

    ‘so, looking at this from a strictly engineering concern, without the need to refer to neo-Darwinism or evolution or teleology?’

    paragwinn, it is impossible to look at this problem from a ‘strictly engineering perspective’ without referring to teleology or natural processes, since all other radios that we know the origin of, which transmit meaningful information, were created by human intent and design. Perhaps you feel you can analyze this without referring to other radios that were designed by humans but I very much doubt that!

    My question to you is exactly why are you so concerned that these radio waves not be associated teleology in the first place???

  23. 23
    DrREC says:


    ” all other radios that we know the origin of, which transmit meaningful information, were created by human intent and design.”

    So you’ve not only accepted the claims of the paper-but gone well beyond them? You now have determined these ‘radio waves’ encode bio-information? How?

    There are plenty of radio sources in nature. They are not known to transmit information.


  24. 24
    bornagain77 says:

    DrREC, I am well aware that there are natural radio sources which do not transmit meaningful information.,,,

    ,,,That is the whole point of the importance of our presuppositions DrREC!!! How and why DO YOU presuppose that these radio signals from bacteria, and amongst bacteria, are not transmitting meaningful information? I have already listed several studies outlining the the sheer, unmatched, complexity of the cell, as well as a few studies outlining profound unresolved mysteries of cell action, all of which to give a starting foundation to my presupposition. Whereas you have listed nothing. Why should I give any credence at all to your presupposition, that the radio signals are not meaningful, when you have, in fact, proposed no mechanism at all to explain such actions and are merely doubting that it could happen??? Need I remind you that it is exactly this type of thinking that is what lay at the root of the Junk DNA fiasco, as well as the vestigial organ fiasco of neo-Darwinists???


    we already have evidence for ‘chemical’ communication among colonies of bacteria;

    Quorum sensing: cell-to-cell communication in bacteria.
    Excerpt: Bacteria communicate with one another using chemical signal molecules. As in higher organisms, the information supplied by these molecules is critical for synchronizing the activities of large groups of cells. In bacteria, chemical communication involves producing, releasing, detecting, and responding to small hormone-like molecules termed autoinducers . This process, termed quorum sensing, allows bacteria to monitor the environment for other bacteria and to alter behavior on a population-wide scale in response to changes in the number and/or species present in a community.

    Another Layer on the Information Story: Quorum Sensing –
    Jonathan M. – article with video

    further notes;

    “The thyroid gland, pituitary gland, thymus, pineal gland, and coccyx, … once considered useless by evolutionists, are now known to have important functions. The list of 180 “vestigial” structures is practically down to zero. Unfortunately, earlier Darwinists assumed that if they were ignorant of an organ’s function, then it had no function.”
    “Tornado in a Junkyard” – book – by former atheist James Perloff

    For a prime example of evolution’s failed predictions of vestigial organs, recently in October 2007, the appendix has been found to have essential purpose in the human body:

    Appendix has purpose:
    Excerpt: “The appendix acts as a good safe house for bacteria,” said Duke surgery professor Bill Parker.

    Failed Predictions of Evolutionists – Cornelius Hunter – audio

  25. 25
    bornagain77 says:

    DrREC, I think with a little refinement, this experiment can provide conclusive proof that bacteria are communicating using radio waves, and perhaps even provide proof for ‘quantum’ communication;

    New study shows that bacteria can communicate through the air
    Excerpt: Professor Alan Parsons and Dr Richard Heal of QinetiQ ltd, have shown that physically separated colonies of bacteria can transmit signals conferring resistance to commonly used antibiotics.

  26. 26
    DrREC says:

    “I think with a little refinement, this experiment can provide conclusive proof that bacteria are communicating using radio waves, and perhaps even provide proof for ‘quantum’ communication.”

    I think you should read the article you linked:

    “Yet, if the gap between the compartments was sealed, the bacteria in the first compartment died. Professor Parsons and Dr Heal concluded that the bacteria must have been responding to some kind of airborne signal from the adjacent culture probably in the form of a volatile chemical.”

    I don’t believe radio is blocked by a little plastic. Seems to work fine indoors for me.

    Your claims seem to be escalating–how did we get to quantum communication?

  27. 27
    bornagain77 says:

    DrREC, and the power scaling for your radio signal compared to the bacteria radio signal is what exactly??? Methinks you are much to quick to dismiss what you really don’t understand! As I said, ‘with refinement’!

    quote of note from the article:

    ‘Further research is still required to identify the exact nature of the signalling mechanism,’

    i.e. My bet is that the radio signals from the bacteria have purpose. And your bet is in the same boat as JUNK DNA. Myself, I like those odds!

    DrREC, since quantum teleportation of information is now shown to be possible,,,

    Researchers Succeed in Quantum Teleportation of Light Waves – April 2011
    Excerpt: In this experiment, researchers in Australia and Japan were able to transfer quantum information from one place to another without having to physically move it. It was destroyed in one place and instantly resurrected in another, “alive” again and unchanged. This is a major advance, as previous teleportation experiments were either very slow or caused some information to be lost.

    ,,, and since even lowly bacteria are far more advanced, as far as programming is concerned, than any man-made computer programs. Then the presupposition that naturally follows is that it should not surprise us in the least to find as such in bacteria. Unless you are a neo-Darwinists of course then of course the game is to deny all evidence for design, and do your damnedest to be as obtuse as possible!

  28. 28
    kuartus says:

    This is very interesting. There is also evidence that paramecium are able to communicate with photons as well!


  29. 29
    bornagain77 says:

    Thanks very much kuartus, that study is definitely very interesting and spot on to the topic:

    Cellular Communication through Light
    Excerpt: As there were significant differences when separating the populations with glass or quartz, it is suggested that the cell populations use two (or more) frequencies for cellular information transfer, which influences at least energy uptake, cell division rate and growth correlation. Altogether the study strongly supports a cellular communication system, which is different from a molecule-receptor-based system and hints that photon-triggering is a fine tuning principle in cell chemistry.

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