Posted by: arrogantscientist | April 1, 2009

Actual evidence for Intelligent Design – Irreducible Complexity in Drosophila

Science has always viewed Intelligent Design, and particularly Irreducible Complexity, as a “God of the Gaps” argument – what can’t currently be explained is God’s business, until science sufficiently explains it.

Now however, it is ironic that the scientific evidence for Irreducible Complexity should come from the scientist’s plaything – Drosophila.

The two phenotypes shown below, headless and bodyless, were initially thought to be the product of mutations in two different genes, but it turns out to be from just one, now called sliced.

headless

The headless phenotype.

The bodyless phenotype.

The bodyless phenotype.

There are two points about this gene that together show it is irreducibly complex:

1. Any mutation to this gene, even silent, causes one of the above phenotypes.

2. This gene is not present in any other organism.

Essentially this means evolution cannot act on this gene, or explain its existence. As any mutation to the gene is lethal, there are no variations that can be passed on from generation to generation, as required by evolution. The same gene is not present in any organism, which refutes the evidence for common ancestry required for evolution to work – evolution does not allow for genes to be created from nothing.

The two phenotypes of sliced.

The two phenotypes of sliced.

Evolution cannot explain these phenotypes – the only explanation is the hand of God.

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Responses

  1. Heh, good post! Reminds me of:

    “The design inference and irreducible complexity consist of two components: an extensive negative argument against the plausibility of evolutionary explanations, and then a brief attempt at a positive argument relying on an analogy between biological adaptations and human artifacts. Behe’s negative argument against stepwise assembly of “irreducible” systems fails because it mistakenly assumes that evolution proceeds only by improvement of an extant function, whereas evolutionary theory extending back to Darwin has always emphasized the importance of changes of function in the origin of complex adaptations (17–22). The flagellum, although elucidated long after Darwin, is a useful case to examine. Contrary to the assertions of Behe and Dembski, a survey has shown that only 20 of the 42 proteins of the Salmonella typhimurium flagellum are universally required in bacterial flagella; and of those, 18 have already been found to have homologous related proteins that function in other, simpler biochemical systems (23). It is therefore not true that simpler precursors would be nonfunctional; they clearly could have had different functions, just like the related systems in existence today. Deleting parts from a modern system does not simulate evolution in reverse, any more than decapitating modern vertebrates provides information about the origin of cephalization in early invertebrates.”
    http://www.pnas.org/content/104/suppl.1/8669.full

    …but it’s better with graphics!

  2. Frankly I don’t think most people appreciate the scientific value of decapitation. The research, social, psychological, economical, nutritional and medical benefits are huge, and mostly undiscovered.

  3. Geez, it took me this long to finally accept evolution, and now I have to go back.

    Arrrrgh…

  4. итак: восхитительно!

  5. That’s the dumbest argument I’ve heard yet. It simply shows that the gene encodes an essential product. I’m sure there are certain point mutations within the gene that will not cause the lethal phenotype. Furthermore, just because a gene can not be acted upon by evolution does not support its intelligent creation. Myosin, for example, inhabits such an important niche in animal physiology that there have been almost no changes to its sequence across hundreds of millions of years. That’s simply because it has been optimized in muscle tissue.

  6. Occum’s razor was applied during production of this article.

  7. […] Actual evidence for Intelligent Design – Irreducible Complexity in … Apr 1, 2009 … Science has always viewed Intelligent Design, and particularly Irreducible Complexity, … […]

  8. Is this supposed to be a joke? There is no gene named “sliced” in drosophila, and the so called “bodyless” mutation has never been documented (although I have seen the headless type before).


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