Monday, May 5, 2008

Pro- and Eukaryotes

I added a new element on the right side--a list of authors with articles related to the subjects I talk about. (Correction on 8/6/2008--I found it is blocked if you are not signed into Google. I will try to put it in a different type of link). There's probably not a perfect way to arrange these on a blog, just like this is not the most organized way to teach biology. But I'm hoping what I try to present resonates with some of you. I don't see this material in secular media or even from teaching institutions shown in a way that gives persons unbiased explanations of the complexity of biology to evaluate for themselves. I don't search the Internet that closely--and perhaps it's out there somewhere. But most of what I see are either arguments from the philosophical point of view, or science presented (as from educational institutions) in "evolution language," which assumes evolution whether it is proven or not. Words like "conserved" describe genes in a way that compares organisms while implying they are evolved one from another and their genes are similar because of that. Therefore the jargon is charged.

I'm not going to keep from a little philosophy of my own, (opinion is the better word), but I want to add the science and math that go with the ideas. That keeps the arguments more focused, I think. And it is possible for anyone to understand. The math of exponents is not difficult. And the biology is brought to us by experimental evidence.

The first author I put on my list of articles is Eugene Koonin, with two other authors, from the journal Cell, written in the year 2000. Koonin has written many articles from his position at the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI). The article, "The Impact of Comparitive Genomics on Our Understanding of Evolution," is about comparing genes of different kinds of orgnisms and is very important. The public had been told by evolutionists (in general) that multi-celled animals had evolved from single-celled animals. Two main types of cells are called prokaryotic (one-celled bacteria are like this) and eukaryotic (cells which make up plants and animals with multiple cells). The NCBI picture shows the two kinds. See "Cell" in Wikipedia here for further information.

The article shows that that this assumption about evolution was wrong. Dr. Koonin and the rest evaluated findings from complete sequencing of genes of bacteria, archaea (other single-celled organisms) and yeast and discuss them in this article. (When you click the article, it may come through with small print. You can try doing a "Print Preview" from the file menu and adjust that to a readable size.) They compared the proteins to see how closely related they were on the microscopic level. They found there were great differences--too great to have easily evolved one from another. The question eventually relates to how the gene affects the way the animal or plant turns out. Dr. Koonin had this to say near the end of the article:

More generally, what we realize with due humility from our first forays into complete-genome-scale comparative genomics, is that we do not truly understand the connection between the genome and the phenotype of an organism.
The phenotype is the outcome, or form, of the animal. I'm not saying it is Eugene Koonin himself who told everyone that eukaryotes evolved from prokaryotes, but scientists in general. But through the comparison of genes, not even possible before 1995, his group shows that this particular evolutionary assumption is wrong. I admire Dr. Koonin for saying what he did.

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