19 Replies to “Probability of a single protein forming by chance”

1. 1
bornagain77 says:

Of note:

Mathematical Basis for Probability Calculations Used in (the film) Origin
Excerpt: Putting the probabilities together means adding the exponents. The probability of getting a properly folded chain of one-handed amino acids, joined by peptide bonds, is one chance in 10^74+45+45, or one in 10^164 (Meyer, p. 212). This means that, on average, you would need to construct 10^164 chains of amino acids 150 units long to expect to find one that is useful.
http://www.originthefilm.com/mathematics.php

And as bad as that is for atheists, actually the odds are much worse than 1 in 10^164.

As Dr. Durston clarifies in the following article, interdependencies among amino acids greatly reduce the number of possible functional protein sequences by many orders of magnitude.

(A Reply To PZ Myers) Estimating the Probability of Functional Biological Proteins? Kirk Durston , Ph.D. Biophysics – 2012
Excerpt (Page 4): To clarify, the probability of obtaining a functional sequence for RecA in a single sampling is approximately 1 chance in 1 with 250 zeros after it.,,,
The Probabilities Get Worse
This measure of functional information (for the RecA protein) is good as a first pass estimate, but the situation is actually far worse for an evolutionary search. In the method described above and as noted in our paper, each site in an amino acid protein sequence is assumed to be independent of all other sites in the sequence. In reality, we know that this is not the case. There are numerous sites in the sequence that are mutually interdependent with other sites somewhere else in the sequence. A more recent paper shows how these interdependencies can be located within multiple sequence alignments.[6] These interdependencies greatly reduce the number of possible functional protein sequences by many orders of magnitude which, in turn, reduce the probabilities by many orders of magnitude as well. In other words, the numbers we obtained for RecA above are exceedingly generous; the actual situation is far worse for an evolutionary search.
http://powertochange.com/wp-co.....Myers_.pdf

And indeed, as the following study shows, Proteins act as a single unified whole, not as a collection of individual amino acids that are doing their own thing (as is presupposed in the current ‘generous’ probability calculations):

Proteins with cruise control provide new perspective:
“A mathematical analysis of the experiments showed that the proteins themselves acted to correct any imbalance imposed on them through artificial mutations and restored the chain to working order.”
http://www.princeton.edu/main/...../60/95O56/

The way in which proteins achieve this interdependence among amino acids, so that the protein may operate as a single unified whole, is via quantum entanglement and/or quantum coherence:

Quantum coherent-like state observed in a biological protein for the first time – October 13, 2015
Excerpt: If you take certain atoms and make them almost as cold as they possibly can be, the atoms will fuse into a collective low-energy quantum state called a Bose-Einstein condensate. In 1968 physicist Herbert Fröhlich predicted that a similar process at a much higher temperature could concentrate all of the vibrational energy in a biological protein into its lowest-frequency vibrational mode. Now scientists in Sweden and Germany have the first experimental evidence of such so-called Fröhlich condensation (in proteins).,,,
The real-world support for Fröhlich’s theory took so long to obtain because of the technical challenges of the experiment, Katona said.
https://phys.org/news/2015-10-quantum-coherent-like-state-biological-protein.html

Classical and Quantum Information Channels in Protein Chain – Dj. Koruga, A. Tomi?, Z. Ratkaj, L. Matija – 2006
Abstract: Investigation of the properties of peptide plane in protein chain from both classical and quantum approach is presented. We calculated interatomic force constants for peptide plane and hydrogen bonds between peptide planes in protein chain. On the basis of force constants, displacements of each atom in peptide plane, and time of action we found that the value of the peptide plane action is close to the Planck constant. This indicates that peptide plane from the energy viewpoint possesses synergetic classical/quantum properties. Consideration of peptide planes in protein chain from information viewpoint also shows that protein chain possesses classical and quantum properties. So, it appears that protein chain behaves as a triple dual system: (1) structural – amino acids and peptide planes, (2) energy – classical and quantum state, and (3) information – classical and quantum coding. Based on experimental facts of protein chain, we proposed from the structure-energy-information viewpoint its synergetic code system.
http://www.scientific.net/MSF.518.491

How many orders of magnitude are these probabilities for finding a functional protein reduced by by the ‘quantum interdependence’ among amino acids?

Well the following article found that “the possibility of finding even one that is in the quantum critical state by accident is mind-bogglingly small and, to all intents and purposes, impossible.,, of the order of 10^-50 of possible small biomolecules and even less for proteins,”,,,

Quantum criticality in a wide range of important biomolecules – March 2015
Excerpt: “Most of the molecules taking part actively in biochemical processes are tuned exactly to the transition point and are critical conductors,” they say.
That’s a discovery that is as important as it is unexpected. “These findings suggest an entirely new and universal mechanism of conductance in biology very different from the one used in electrical circuits.”
The permutations of possible energy levels of biomolecules is huge so the possibility of finding even one that is in the quantum critical state by accident is mind-bogglingly small and, to all intents and purposes, impossible.,, of the order of 10^-50 of possible small biomolecules and even less for proteins,”,,,
“what exactly is the advantage that criticality confers?”
https://medium.com/the-physics-arxiv-blog/the-origin-of-life-and-the-hidden-role-of-quantum-criticality-ca4707924552

Moreover, quantum entanglement and/or quantum coherence is, in and of itself, a ‘non-local’, beyond space and time, effect that requires a ‘non-local, beyond space and time, cause in order to explain the effect,

Looking beyond space and time to cope with quantum theory – 29 October 2012
Excerpt: “Our result gives weight to the idea that quantum correlations somehow arise from outside spacetime, in the sense that no story in space and time can describe them,”
http://www.quantumlah.org/high.....uences.php

To say this is antagonistic to the reductive materialistic presuppositions of Darwinian evolution would be a severe understatement. It is, in fact, an outright falsification of Darwinian presuppositions!

Simply put, as a Christian I have a beyond space and time cause to appeal to in order to explain quantum entanglement in proteins, Darwinists don’t.

Colossians 1:17
He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

Moreover, on top of atheists having no clue how functional proteins may be found by chance, atheists, even if the could figure out how chance could produce one functional protein, still would have no clue how that functional protein would find its final folded state: As the following author noted “a relatively small protein of only 100 amino acids can take some 10^100 different configurations. If it tried these shapes at the rate of 100 billion a second, it would take longer than the age of the universe to find the correct one. Just how these molecules do the job in nanoseconds, nobody knows.,,,”

Physicists Discover Quantum Law of Protein Folding – February 22, 2011
Quantum mechanics finally explains why protein folding depends on temperature in such a strange way.
Excerpt: First, a little background on protein folding. Proteins are long chains of amino acids that become biologically active only when they fold into specific, highly complex shapes. The puzzle is how proteins do this so quickly when they have so many possible configurations to choose from.
To put this in perspective, a relatively small protein of only 100 amino acids can take some 10^100 different configurations. If it tried these shapes at the rate of 100 billion a second, it would take longer than the age of the universe to find the correct one. Just how these molecules do the job in nanoseconds, nobody knows.,,,
Today, Luo and Lo say these curves can be easily explained if the process of folding is a quantum affair. By conventional thinking, a chain of amino acids can only change from one shape to another by mechanically passing through various shapes in between.
But Luo and Lo say that if this process were a quantum one, the shape could change by quantum transition, meaning that the protein could ‘jump’ from one shape to another without necessarily forming the shapes in between.,,,
Their astonishing result is that this quantum transition model fits the folding curves of 15 different proteins and even explains the difference in folding and unfolding rates of the same proteins.
That’s a significant breakthrough. Luo and Lo’s equations amount to the first universal laws of protein folding. That’s the equivalent in biology to something like the thermodynamic laws in physics.
http://www.technologyreview.co.....f-protein/

Thus, as was somewhat alluded to in the video, the impossibility of finding a single functional protein is only the beginning of the insurmountable problems for the Darwinian naturalist who seeks to explain life solely through recourse to matter and energy randomly jostling about.

2. 2
harry says:

BA77 @1

Great stuff, BA!
As usual.

3. 3
harry says:

Coming up with a plausible explanation of how life might have come about mindlessly and accidentally is like explaining how a functioning laptop PC might have done so. Impossible.

4. 4
bornagain77 says:

Enzyme Catalyst:
Enzyme expert Dr Richard Wolfenden, of the University of North Carolina, showed in 1998 that a reaction ‘“absolutely essential” in creating the building blocks of DNA and RNA would take 78 million years in water’, but was speeded up 10^18 times by an enzyme.1 This was orotidine 5?-monophosphate decarboxylase, responsible for de novo synthesis of uridine 5?-phosphate, an essential precursor of RNA and DNA, by decarboxylating orotidine 5?-monophosphate (OMP).2

In 2003, Wolfenden found another enzyme exceeded even this vast rate enhancement. A phosphatase, which catalyzes the hydrolysis of phosphate dianions, magnified the reaction rate by thousand times more than even that previous enzyme—10^21 times. That is, the phosphatase allows reactions vital for cell signalling and regulation to take place in a hundredth of a second. Without the enzyme, this essential reaction would take a trillion years—almost a hundred times even the supposed evolutionary age of the universe (about 15 billion years)!3

Implications:
Wolfenden said,

‘Without catalysts, there would be no life at all, from microbes to humans. It makes you wonder how natural selection operated in such a way as to produce a protein that got off the ground as a primitive catalyst for such an extraordinarily slow reaction.’

5. 5
Mung says:

Coming up with a plausible explanation of how life might have come about mindlessly and accidentally is like explaining how a functioning laptop PC might have done so. Impossible.

It’s not impossible, it’s just very, very, unlikely.

And as we all know, unlikely thing happen all the time.

Poof! An eye!

It’s consistent with evolutionary theory.

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mike1962 says:

Very nice video. Thanks for the post.

7. 7
Peter says:

Just another miracle needed to have intelligent life. People have a hard time believing in God because they are skeptical about miracles. But if they understood science they would realize it takes an infinite number of miracles to have intelligent life. A lot more than the number of miracles Jesus performs in the Bible.

8. 8
jhervati says:

An abiogenesis explanation for the origin of life does NOT entail the spontaneous emergence of a complex protein. The explanation would involve much simpler structures that over millions of years would gradually evolve into self-sustaining biological organisms. On the other side, what is the probability that an all-powerful intelligent designer just sprang up out of the void who is able to create those complex proteins with a snap of His fingers??

9. 9
Barry Arrington says:

Jhervati at 8:
OK, I’ll bite. What are the precursor structures that were not proteins that ultimately evolved into proteins, making life possible? Also, please provide a description of how those precursor structures “evolved” before the replication system enabled by the genetic code existed.
BTW, it is just silly to say that simple amino acids can form spontaneously then those amino acids can spontaneously bond together in simple proto-cells without describing a plausible pathway for that to have happened. 2nd BTW: If you are are to do that, you should just go ahead and book your ticket to Stockholm to collect your Nobel prize.

10. 10
ET says:

jhervati:

On the other side, what is the probability that an all-powerful intelligent designer just sprang up out of the void who is able to create those complex proteins with a snap of His fingers??

The probability of that being a strawman is 1/1. However, we do have evidence of intelligent agencies successfully synthesizing a working full genome.

11. 11
Ainz Ooal Gown says:

I frequently visit Mark Mahin’s blogs (Head Truth & Future and Cosmos) as he posts loads of content contradicting the materialist faith. Content such as studies contradicting the materialist belief that the brain creates the mind, as well as a couple of articles about evolution. He recently posted a blog post about abiogenesis showing just how improbable it really is. I’m sure some attending UD may enjoy reading it.

https://futureandcosmos.blogspot.com/2019/12/abiogenesis-would-be-mother-of-all.html?m=1

12. 12
jhervati says:

Barry: BTW, we do NOT know what physical and chemical phenomena worked together over time for life to emerge from non-life. Scientists have inklings of how that might have happened and much remains to be studied. Because of the immense spans of time involved, we might never know. But it does not follow that, because we do not yet have a full explanation of how life emerged through natural processes, that intervention by an intelligent designer is thereby proven. The existence af an intelligent designer is just as fantastic as any complex protein, or the incredible molecular machinery that makes life possible. Why do you not require that the designer himself be explained and proven?

13. 13
ET says:

jhervati:

Scientists have inklings of how that might have happened and much remains to be studied.

No one has an inkling on how life could have spontaneously arisen. Such a thing goes against everything that we know

But it does not follow that, because we do not yet have a full explanation of how life emerged through natural processes, that intervention by an intelligent designer is thereby proven.

True. We infer the OoL was Intelligently Designed because of our knowledge of cause-an-effect relationships.

The existence af an intelligent designer is just as fantastic as any complex protein, or the incredible molecular machinery that makes life possible.

Cuz you say so? Really?

Why do you not require that the designer himself be explained and proven?

Look, your side says it has a step-by-step mechanism that can produce life and its diversity. So it is up to you and yours to demonstrate such a thing. ID doesn’t make any claims about that. ID doesn’t make any claims about the Designer(s). The DESIGN is evidence that such a Designer existed. We study the design because that is what we have.

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Barry Arrington says:

Jhervati, I was about to fisk your comment, but I see that ET has done so already, so I won’t bother.
Still: “Who designed the designer?” Really? That old chestnut is the best you’ve got? Wow. Why don’t you read a book.

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kairosfocus says:

Jhervati, perhaps you should ponder logic of being across possible worlds. Some entities are contingent, thus caused. Others, are impossible of being in any world — such as a square circle. Yet others, are framework for any world to exist and as such are necessary, causally independent and in fact are eternal. This last as utter non-being, the true no-thing can have no causal powers. Accordingly, were there ever utter non-being, such would forever obtain. So, as a world manifestly is, something always was, an adequate, necessary being reality root or source. Where, in the context of our being inescapably morally governed creatures, that root needs to be inherently good and even utterly wise. Outlines of a familiar figure emerge. KF

PS: Even within the world of contingent creatures, that some object b is per reliable signs credibly designed by another being d, is not overturned by pointing onward to the cause of d, say d-1. In short, you committed a red herring fallacy, setting up an implicit strawman caricature of the root of reality on an erroneous premise regarding logic of being. Not all possible beings are contingent, thus caused. If you doubt me, try to imagine any distinct possible world, W, in which duality, two-ness [thus the number 2 and all of its friends!] does not exist, or can cease from existing. In short it is ill-informed to assert or imply that everything has a cause.

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kairosfocus says:

Hi Mung, longtime no see. KF

17. 17
kairosfocus says:

Folks, you are persuading me to do a response to Monod. KF

18. 18
Silver Asiatic says:

I think Mung’s comment goes back to last year – this is an old thread. But it would be good to see him again.

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kairosfocus says:

Just checked, you are right both times.