'Junk DNA' Intelligent Design

We are encouraged to celebrate ENCODE III and the demise of junk DNA

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After the initial controversy:

It is no secret among biologists that the ENCODE II pronouncements in 2012 were controversial. International scientists in the ENCODE consortium made statements about how 80% of the human genetic material was “functional”1 But the term functional, for the past couple of decades, had become associated with evolutionary concepts. The prevailing idea was that the DNA sequences in the cell were mostly not functional but rather made up of “junk DNA” which testified to the evolutionary origin of the cell’s genetic material. So, the ENCODE II team found themselves very unpopular with a lot of fellow biologists for suggesting a high level of functionality in the genome. Now, however in 2020, a third ENCODE project was published. Would it build on the conclusions of the ENCODE II team, or would it revise its estimates of functionality drastically downward?

Margaret Helder, “Celebrate ENCODE III and the demise of ‘Junk DNA’” at Creation-Evolution Headlines

We hope we are not spoiling the story by saying “not downward”:

The ENCODE III teams did not retreat in the face of pressure from doctrinaire evolutionists. They continued to make their observations and to let the evidence speak for itself. In general, they took a pragmatic approach to the whole issue in the hope that “Collectively, the ENCODE data and registry provide an expansive resource for the scientific community to build a better understanding of the organization and function of the human and mouse genomes.”26 They felt no obligation to trot out irrelevant evolutionary theories on junk DNA, especially since these have been already falsified by the ENCODE results.

Margaret Helder, “Celebrate ENCODE III and the demise of ‘Junk DNA’” at Creation-Evolution Headlines

Remember that anti-ENCODE guy, Dan Graur, who wasn’t doing “politeness” any more on this subject? He might want to talk to Miss Manners (just the free three-lesson introductory course). Not a huge time sink.

3 Replies to “We are encouraged to celebrate ENCODE III and the demise of junk DNA

  1. 1
    jawa says:

    “ Remember that anti-ENCODE guy, Dan Graur, who wasn’t doing “politeness” any more on this subject? He might want to talk to Miss Manners (just the free three-lesson introductory course). Not a huge time sink.”

    That should work.

    But maybe this is an easier suggestion for that grumpy guy:

    Wake up and smell the flowers!

    Or better yet:

    Get a life!

    🙂

  2. 2
    Seversky says:

    Better yet, answer these points:

    Five Things You Should Know if You Want to Participate in the Junk DNA Debate

    Here are five things you should know if you want to engage in a legitimate scientific discussion about the amount of junk DNA in a genome.

    Genetic Load

    Every newborn human baby has about 100 mutations not found in either parent. If most of our genome contained functional sequence information, then this would be an intolerable genetic load. Only a small percentage of our genome can contain important sequence information suggesting strongly that most of our genome is junk.

    C-Value Paradox

    A comparison of genomes from closely related species shows that genome size can vary by a factor of ten or more. The only reasonable explanation is that most of the DNA in the larger genomes is junk.

    Modern Evolutionary Theory

    Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of population genetics. The modern understanding of evolution is perfectly consistent with the presence of large amounts of junk DNA in a genome.

    Pseudogenes and broken genes are junk

    More than half of our genomes consists of pseudogenes, including broken transposons and bits and pieces of transposons. A few may have secondarily acquired a function but, to a first approximation, broken genes are junk.

    Most of the genome is not conserved

    Most of the DNA sequences in large genomes is not conserved. These sequences diverge at a rate consistent with fixation of neutral alleles by random genetic drift. This strongly suggests that it does not have a function although one can’t rule out some unknown function that doesn’t depend on sequence.

    If you want to argue against junk DNA then you need to refute or rationalize all five of these observations.

    Posted by Laurence A. Moran at Thursday, July 04, 2013

  3. 3
    ET says:

    Shut up seversky. You need to answer the question of how blind and mindless processes produced histone octamers to spool up and organize the junk and functional DNA.

    Larry Moran was too chicken to take it on. And that says it all, actually. And “functional sequence information” is a strawman. Larry and all evos love those.

    Nothing in biology makes sense in the light of evolution by means of blind and mindless processes.

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