Biologists Report Important Gene Regulation Function for Transposons

Transposons are a type of DNA which many Darwinists have written off as mere genetic junk. The pro-Darwin TalkOrigins archive tells us that transposons “can be thought of as intragenomic parasites.” But don’t feel bad for the poor transposons — it looks like they might be looking at a new career as “the DNA formerly known as junk”: biologists from Stanford and UC Santa Cruz are reporting that “‘Junk’ DNA Now Looks Like Powerful Regulator.” That type of “junk” is the transposon. As the press release about the study explains, “Large swaths of garbled human DNA once dismissed as junk appear to contain some valuable sections.” The scientists report that in the past, they “had identified a handful of transposons Read More ›

International Scientific Discoveries Since Kitzmiller Which Support ID (Part I)

It’s been just over a year since the Kitzmiller ruling, and over a series of 3 posts, I’d like to briefly highlight some scientific discoveries reported since that time: In November, 2006, a Nature article entitled, “It’s the junk that makes us human” reported that much non-coding (“junk”)-DNA may control gene expression, and be responsible for many phenotypic differences between species. A subsequent Nature article highlighted the work of Simon Shepherd at the University of Bradford in the United Kingdom, explaining that there are layers of meaning in the genetic code which go beyond the three-nucleotide codon language: [R]esearchers now know that there are numerous other layers of biological information in DNA, interspersed between, or superimposed on, the passages written Read More ›

Follow-up on Junk-DNA

Since my post on “junk-DNA” last week, I would like to report a couple interesting discoveries on the topic. Wonderful List of References for Functionality of “Junk-DNA” I discovered a website at http://www.junkdna.com/new_citations.html which has compiled dozens of citations to articles discussing functionality for non-coding junk-DNA. The site also provides two quotations readers should consider: “…a certain amount of hubris was required for anyone to call any part of the genome ‘junk’.” — Francis Collins (2006) “You only believe theories when they make predictions confirmed by scientific evidence.” Star Trek Promotes the “Introns are Evolutionary Junk” Myth Last last night I was amused by watching an episode of Star Trek: the Next Generation. The episode, called “Genesis,” featured the Enterprise Read More ›

Junk DNA and Science-Stopping

Over the years, many (though not all) Darwinists have stated that non-coding DNA is not worth exploring because it is thought to be mere evolutionary junk. In 2003, Scientific American explained that “the introns within genes and the long stretches of intergenic DNA between genes, Mattick says, ‘were immediately assumed to be evolutionary junk.’” John S. Mattick, director of the Institute for Molecular Bioscience at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia was then quoted saying this might have been “one of the biggest mistakes in the history of molecular biology.” (Wayt T. Gibbs, “The Unseen Genome: Gems Among the Junk,” Scientific American (Nov. 2003), emphasis added) Of course known functionality for non-coding DNA now goes far beyond intronic DNA. Read More ›

Response To John Rennie at Scientific American

I appreciate that John Rennie has posted a response to my response to his original post about Kansas on the Scientific American blog. (And I happily forgive the accidental misspelling of my name.) A common tactic in debate is to condescendingly say, “Thanks for proving my point,” when your debate opponent actually refuted all of your points. Other tactics include name-calling, changing the issue at stake, making false accusations, and appealing to authorities as if they are correct simply because they are “authorities.” John Rennie used all of these tactics in his response. Once again, there will be a major difference between my response to Mr. Rennie and his response to me: I will continue to cite scientific literature without Read More ›