A recent issue of the Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences has just been published, and the whole issue is stacked with topics that support ID ideas – specifically, the idea that genomic evolution, to the extent that it is beneficial, is largely teleological. The introductory paper refers to the “creative genome” which contain “organizational frameworks that affect genome behavior”.
I have not read the papers, only the abstracts, so the information in this post is rather tentative. However, here are some papers that seem to be of interest to the ID community:
- parasites have a whole DNA library of surface proteins that they switch between, and a mutator that focuses the mutations in the right place to provide the switching
- Recombination of sex chromosomes is under tight regulation
- An examine of the role of SSRs for mutability in responding to environmental changes
- An overview of common mutational protocols in teleological evolution
- Rapid venom evolution driven by noncoding DNA signals directing mutations
- How bacteria share genes with each other (see also this article on bacteria’s genetic construction kit)
- Methods vertebrates use to mutate themselves
- Gene conversion during meiosis (I can’t actually figure out from the abstract if this one is supportive of ID ideas or not, but based on other information on gene conversion, it certainly might)
The issue also has counterevidence for ID such as the formation of cancers. However, it is not my contention that all mutations are teleological. You get into even dirtier water when you realize that a nonteleological mutation might affect the operation of previously teleological mutational systems (this happens when a haphazard mutation makes a sequence of DNA *look* like it should be mutable (according to the cell’s protocols) when it is not. A non-SSR sequence can have a mutation that makes it look like an SSR, or a mutation can make something look like a target for VDJ recombination. Far from disproving the idea of teleological mutations, this shows how sensitive the mutation system is to perturbation, and how unlikely it is that the present mutational system could be the result of a continual evolution of chance mutations from a non-teleological system.
It should also be noted that anytime “second order” selection or “indirect selection” is mentioned, this is not referring to a specific mechanism, but rather referring to the idea that the system itself is more beneficial than the organism without the system. This implies nothing about the ability of selection to create the system, only that it is beneficial once in place. Actually, since it is second-order selection, it does imply that it couldn’t have been built with selection, because that would have to be built directly with selection, not indirectly. In other words, if something is selectable through “indirect selection”, it relies on design for its origin.