Intelligent Design

nFGFR1, A Protein That Regulates the Regulators

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Most people have heard of genes, but few understand how they work. The textbooks say that the human genome has almost 30,000 genes and that a gene typically is used to create a protein molecule. But in fact it is difficult to speak of a gene as a thing. For example, proteins are usually not simply constructed from a given stretch of DNA that we would call a gene. Instead, proteins are constructed from several different stretches of DNA. In other words, our “genes” are often a collection of smaller segments that are separated in our DNA. These different DNA segments, which are given the uninteresting name of exons for “expressed regions,” are first copied, and then the copies are combined or appended to each other, into one single transcript. The job of combining exons is done by massive protein machines, and a great variety of different combinations are used, depending on what is needed at the moment. To summarize, a gene is often a collection of separate, smaller, DNA regions that can be combined in many different ways to produce different protein molecules. So those roughly 30,000 genes can produce a great many more different proteins.  Read more

18 Replies to “nFGFR1, A Protein That Regulates the Regulators

  1. 1
    Mapou says:

    From Science Daily:

    We found that this protein works as a kind of ‘orchestration factor,’ preferably targeting certain gene promoters and enhancers. The idea that a single protein could bind thousands of genes and then organize them into a hierarchy, that was unknown. Nobody predicted it.

    Interesting. A few years ago, right here on UD, I was making the case that the genome must be organized hierarchically with the protein coding genes at the bottom. I based my argument on several factors such as the observation that intelligent human designers create hierarchical designs and my interpretation of the tree of life metaphor in the book of Genesis. Some Darwinist or other at the time took great issue with my prediction. I really wish UD had a search feature.

  2. 2
    Dionisio says:

    Interesting post, Dr. Hunter. Thanks.

    Here’s another comment on the source paper:

    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....ent-563774

  3. 3
    Dionisio says:

    This post references another related paper:

    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....ent-563780

  4. 4
    nightlight says:

    @Cornelius Hunter

    There simply is no scientific evidence that this could have evolved.

    The correct statement is:

    “…that this could have evolved via random mutation and natural selection.

  5. 5
  6. 6
    Box says:

    One protein that “organizes this cacophony of genes into a symphony” doesn’t make any sense to me.

    From whence the overview?

    “They found that the protein binds to genes that make neurons and muscles (…)”

    So it has (a detailed) concept of the adult organism “in mind”? How else does it know when production of muscles is necessary and when more neurons?
    And how does it coordinate policies with ‘colleagues’ in other cells? Must we look for the coordinator of these nFGFR1 proteins??
    This story doesn’t make sense to me at all.

    I like this clear admission though:

    We’ve known that the human body has almost 30,000 genes that must be controlled by thousands of transcription factors that bind to those genes, yet we didn’t understand how the activities of genes were coordinated so that they properly develop into an organism.

    I suggest that they still don’t understand. The only way to understand organization is by TOP-DOWN causation.

  7. 7
    Zachriel says:

    Cornelius Hunter: There is no scientific evidence that evolution could have constructed this.

    Actually, there is a rich literature on the evolution of scaled networks, including biological networks.

  8. 8
    Andre says:

    Mapou

    You’ve spoken about it a few times, your prediction vindicated well done!

  9. 9
    Box says:

    Mapou #1, you may be referring to this post:

    Mapou: As an aside, I predict that the entire genome will be found to be organized hierarchically, as in a tree of life, with the protein coding genes being the leaves.

    I conducted the search like this.

  10. 10
    Dionisio says:

    #7

    Actually, there is a rich literature on the evolution of scaled networks, including biological networks.

    But, as far as I’m aware of, they seem to fail the most fundamental tests in science:

    “Where’s the beef?”* and “Show me the money!”**

    However, if anyone is aware of a paper that passes those basic tests, feel free to provide a reference to it here, so we can look at it carefully.

    Thanks.

    (*) from a popular 1980s Wendy’s TV commercial
    (**) from a popular movie from Hollywood

    🙂

  11. 11
    Axel says:

    Yes, Mapou, well done with your prediction. That is quite a feather in the cap for Uncommon Descent. Maybe one of the researchers picked up on your post.

    Well, atheists, how many significant trailblazing thinkers do you have, RTZ or Panda’s Thumb?

  12. 12
    Axel says:

    Box, I spotted this hilarious post by Barry, blowing a gasket at Liddle’s ‘astonishingly audacious revisionism’ on that Google screen you posted for Mapou:

    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....audacious/

    I hope you don’t mind Barry. It’s not malicious.

  13. 13
    Axel says:

    ‘Thanks.’ – Dionisio #10

    You rotten, mealy-mouthed, Areopagite so-and-so, Dionisio!

    It’s a laugh a minute on here today, Dio!

  14. 14
    Dionisio says:

    Axel @13

    I take your ‘nice’ comment as an underserved compliment. 🙂

    BTW, FYI: post #10 was not intended to make you laugh. It was a very serious comment. 🙂
    For fun you may read the papers referenced @2 and @3 above. 🙂

  15. 15
    Axel says:

    As far as humour goes, Dio, you can’t beat a deadpan delivery, whether the intention is serious or jocular.

    An English comedian, Mike Read, went one stage further. After a moment or two’s enthusiastic applause from the audience, he’d bark quite sternly, ‘Alright! That’s enough!’, crossing his hands in rapid motions in front of him. I mean entertainers and particularly comedians live or die by their applause, so it was LOL material of a high order.

    Alas, Dio, I don’t even have a reading knowledge of the language you’ve written those posts in. So, I’ll have to wait until you publish them in English (joke). I’d like to be a fly on the wall listening to you and Cornelius or one of the others discussing the finer points of whatever it is of a scientific nature – biology, I suppose – you gibber about. But not for long…

    The Aussies are masters of deadpan joke-telling. So much so, that I’ve often been tempted to ask them whether they realised just how funny their joke was. And since the Bible is always narrated in a uniformly deadpan manner, I can’t help wondering if God doesn’t have a streak of Aussie blood in him. The time-line is all wrong though.

    I’m inclined to think that, generally, the best jokes and richest slang are conceived in the Anglophone countries.

  16. 16
    Dionisio says:

    Axel @15

    Alright! That’s enough!

    🙂

  17. 17
    Axel says:

    Nice repartee, Dio1

    In his #534, wd400, on Barry’s thread, I linked above, states:

    ‘Now, could you perhaps explain how ID predicts junkless genomes. Or provide the evidence you think supports the conclusion most (all?) DNA has a function?’

    That’s not necessary, although some did predict it. The fact of the matter is that you atheists cited what you wrote of as junk as evidence, if not proof, that the Judaeo-Christian God, omniscient and omnipotent designer, does not exist – or he wouldn’t have bungled the design. Hoisted by their own petard.

  18. 18
    Mapou says:

    Guys, thanks for finding the original comments. ID is kicking arse. We will win this fight. Box, thanks for the search tip. It will come in very handy. There is a treasure trove of information in UD’s archive. I wish someone could use an algorithm to index it all.

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