Evolution or no Evolution – An age-old question

It is quite antonishing and unscientific the way the scientists have been claiming in favor of ‘Evolution Theory’. A research recently published and highlighted as Study answers Darwinian evolution question is one such example.

PRINCETON, N.J., Nov. 13 (UPI) — U.S. scientists have discovered the chains of proteins found in most living organisms act as adaptive machines, able to control their own evolution.

Princeton University researchers said their finding appears to offer evidence of a hidden mechanism that guides the way biological organisms respond to the forces of natural selection. That, they said, provides a new perspective on evolution.

Researchers Raj Chakrabarti, Herschel Rabitz, Stacey Springs and George McLendon made the discovery while conducting experiments on proteins constituting the electron transport chain, a biochemical network essential for metabolism.

A mathematical analysis of the experiments showed the proteins themselves acted to correct any imbalance imposed on them through artificial mutations and restored the chain to working order.

“The discovery answers an age-old question that has puzzled biologists since the time of Darwin: How can organisms be so exquisitely complex, if evolution is completely random, operating like a ‘blind watchmaker’?” said Chakrabarti, an associate research scholar. “Our new theory extends Darwin’s model, demonstrating how organisms can subtly direct aspects of their own evolution to create order out of randomness.”

The research was published in a recent edition of Physical Review Letters.

Self organization is an established phenomena of nature. We can observe it in ant trails, wasp nests, and flocking of birds (fish). Within an organism, early stages of cell division in embryo life (embryogenesis) also follow the same pattern. It is not surprising to drill down further and find phenomenon of ‘create order out of randomness’ within a cell.

To me, knowing existence of such phenomena is not a big achievement. Knowing the evolution of “strategy and thinking process” involved to achieve such behavior is what alleviate theory of evolution from a fiction to a reality. For example, we know that ants use a pheromone based mechanism (stigmergy) to manage the trails towards food. How ants as a community were able to evolve such mechanism is still a question in need of answer, I presume.

Finding answer to above question can be more beneficial to human being instead of ‘evolution or no evolution’.

Originally posted at my Philosophy of Science blog…

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