Thursday, December 6, 2007

More Evo-Devo

In the last post, I explained that the evidence suggests that genetic programs do not control embryological development. That is, the relatively new field of evo-devo, whose raison d'etre was to salvage neo-Darwinism by identifying a genetic basis for major changes occurring early in development, has instead uncovered a good deal of evidence leading to an opposite conclusion.

Of course, neo-Darwinists are plenty adept at ignoring contrary evidence, and the idea that genetic programs control development--since it is a necessary corollary of neo-Darwinism--will not die easily. Nonetheless, here are the sorts of evidences that argue against genetic control of development (this list courtesy of Dembski and Wells from their latest book, The Design of Life)...
Placing foreign DNA into an egg does not change the species of the egg or embryo.

DNA mutations can interfere with development, but they never alter its endpoint.

Different cell types arise in the same animal even though all of them contain the same DNA.

Similar developmental genes are found in animals as different as worms, flies, and mammals.

Eggs contain several structures (such as microtubule arrays and membrane patterns) that are known to influence development independently of the DNA.
Good stuff! Unless, of course, you're more interested in defending neo-Darwinism than in discovering the truth about biological origins.

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