Thursday, 29 October 2009

Translation and transcription

Jaques Monod, Nobel Prize Winner, had this to say about transcription mechanisms. He is an evolutionist, on your side, chaps. But what he says must surely make you take a respectful step back! I've broken it up into smaller paragraphs to make it a little more readable.

"The development of the metabolic system, which, as the primordial soup thinned, must have "learned" to mobilize chemical potential and to synthesize the cellular components, poses Herculean problems.

So also does the emergence of the selectively permeable membrane without which there can be no viable cell.

But the major problem is the origin of the genetic code and of its translation mechanism.

Indeed, instead of a problem it ought rather to be called a riddle. The code is meaningless unless translated. The modern cell's translating machinery consists of at least fifty macromolecular components which are themselves coded in DNA:

the code cannot be translated otherwise than by products of translation.

It is the modern expression of omne vivum ex ovo. When and how did this circle become closed? It is exceedingly difficult to imagine."

(Monod, Jaques [Biochemist, Director of Pasteur Institute, Paris], "Chance and Necessity: An Essay on the Natural Philosophy of Modern Biology", [1971], Penguin: London, 1997, reprint, p.143. Emphasis mine).

In the same vein, Professor Karl Popper, the famous and very well respected policeman of science, experimentation and the interpretation of results, had this to say about the very same matter. I've again broken the text up into more manageable chunks.

"What makes the origin of life and of the genetic code a disturbing riddle is this: the genetic code is without any biological function unless it is translated; that is, unless it leads to the synthesis of the proteins whose structure is laid down by the code.

But, as Monod points out the machinery by which the cell (at least the nonprimitive cell which is the only one we know) translates the code `consists of a least fifty macromolecular components which are themselves coded in DNA' (Monod, 1970; 1971, 143).

Thus the code cannot be translated except by using certain products of its translation. This constitutes a really baffling circle: a vicious circle, it seems for any attempt to form a model, or a theory, of the genesis of the genetic code."

(Popper, Karl R., [Emeritus Professor of Philosophy, University of London], "Scientific Reduction and the Essential Incompleteness of All Science," in "Studies in the Philosophy of Biology," Macmillan: London, 1974, pp.259-284, p.270. Emphasis mine).

So these despised ERVs, 'junk' as they were called, are not useless remnants of a 'common ancestor'. They are extraordinarily useful elements in the cell transcription process, and seem common to all cells.

So bye, bye, common ancestor.




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  1. Hey brother Async, Its Rev from the old forum, Laura told me you had a blog. Hey I didn't know you were an author! Very cool. ;{>

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    The book has taken the anti-evo arguments I was developing on the old forum to an altogether new level - a far more lethal set of arguments which we creationists have completely missed.

    I've been on a couple of other forums, and got thrown off, natch.

    Have a look at this one and the NUMBER OF VIEWS! I can hardly believe it.

    But great to hear from you
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