Can random mutations increase fitness?

Discussion in 'Biology & Genetics' started by James R, Aug 14, 2004.

  1. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    The theory of evolution could be disproved in many ways. For example:

    1. Show that the genome does not change from generation to generation.
    2. Show that the genomes of different lifeforms are so dissimilar that they cannot have any common ancestors.
    3. Show that any change to a genome is harmful to the organism.
    4. Show that survival has nothing to do with adaptation to the environment.
    5. Show that some feature of life is, in fact, "irreducibly complex".
    6. Show that certainly lifeforms have arisen spontaneously, and not by means of incremental changes from earlier lifeforms.
     
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  3. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    Which parts of life are irreducibly complex, do you think, 786?
     
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  5. 786 Searching for Truth Valued Senior Member

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    Natural Selection does not possess the power to create something new. I think I explained this before.

    Natural Selection needs "favorable variations"(Mutations) which CHANCE to occur.

    So you see Natural Selection depends on Mutation, or in other words "favorable variations", which depend on the CHANCE of occurence.

    So Chance is the building block of the theory. If that Chance did not occur then there would be no "favorable variation", or Mutations, without the Mutations, Natural Selection can do nothing. Because it has nothing to act on.
     
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  7. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    786:

    Correct. Evolution requires 2 things, which I listed above.

    Correct. So we agree, then.
     
  8. 786 Searching for Truth Valued Senior Member

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    Yeah, I've always agreed to this. The thing is when I ask a normal person who believes in Evolution they thinks it a fact. When it actually is based completely on chance.

    Well here is a link I found.

    http://www.creationevolution.net/irreducible_complexity.htm

    I just want to say that I don't know much about Irreducible Complexity, but it is a very compelling theory.

    You probably know you the same stuff that I know. So you can do your own search about this concept. As you said there are many pro-creationist sites, and many pro-evolutionist sites. The site I provided, I think is creationist. I'm not sure though, but it seems like it is. I only presented this site to you because it has example of Irreducible Complexity other sites only had information.
     
  9. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    786:

    It is not based completely on chance. It is based on variation + natural selection.

    Also, don't get hung up on mutation - it is not the only way that variation in the genome is produced. In fact, sex is a much more common way of producing variation. When a male and female have sex to produce a foetus, the foetus gets half its genes from the male and half from the female, but which half comes from each is a random process. Thus, the genes of the foetus are shared 50-50 with its parents, but the foetus itself is genetically unique, and is therefore a target for natural selection.

    Well here is a link I found.

    How can you say it is compelling if you don't know much about it? Shouldn't you reserve your judgment until you know more?

    The fact is: nobody has yet provided a single example of a biological structure which is, in fact, irreducibly complex.
     
  10. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    The link you provided, by the way, is obviously Creationist. The conclusion gives it away. I agree with Jerry Coine from the journal Nature, who writes:

    In response to the rhetorical questions of the author of the link you provided, in his conclusion:

    No, it doesn't. The theory of evolution is a scientific theory. It makes no statements about any Supreme Being, either positive or negative. There is no need to assume that a Supreme Being doesn't exist in order to believe in evolution. On the contrary, many biologists believe in God and evolution at the same time. Even the Pope has said that the theory of evolution is not in conflict with Catholicism.

    Sure. Creationism is all about easy answers to the unknown. But "God did it" is a cop-out answer. If God did it, how did He do it? That's what scientists are trying to find out.

    No. This shows that the article is trying to "spin" the issue in a particular way. The article is not objective.

    Note: I have not addressed the specific claims made in the article that certain things are irreducibly complex. I am not a biologist.
     
  11. 786 Searching for Truth Valued Senior Member

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    You are right about the part on Sex. But Sex doesn't give you a completely new Specie.

    And as for Irriducible Complexity. The idea is compelling. And I am not supporting the idea, i'm just sharing it with you.
     
  12. 786 Searching for Truth Valued Senior Member

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    Well if you believe in God the way we do then you wouldn't have asked the question, how did God do it?

    Anyways Science cannot even show us how was the first cell formed. If you read the Cell Theory it clearly states that cells come from pre-existing cells.

    Now this is an obvious question. How did this first living cell get formed?

    The cell is very complex, it cannot be made by "self-organizing" mechanism to do this. Because almost all the components of the cell are needed for the cell to work. This means all must be formed simitaneously.

    Even DNA is very complex, and it is arranged in very precise way. It obviously cannot be a product of chance. DNA is so small but it contains so much information. DNA is an extrodanary molecule.

    There is no theory which can give us the answer to this question. How did life being? (by life I mean the first living cell)
     
  13. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    786:

    Not by itself, no. But in combination with other variations (such as those caused by mutations) it can. Remember, all that is required for a new species is that individuals of the new species are unable to mate successfully with individuals from the original species.

    Thankyou. I'm already aware of it. I agree it sounds good, but unfortunately it breaks down upon close examination by people who know what they are talking about.
     
  14. ElectricFetus Sanity going, going, gone Valued Senior Member

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    Despite the shear weight of evidence that evolution has occurred some people refuse to believe, possible reasons are:
    1. It violates the validity of certain religions claims and thus believing in evolution forces these people to question the accuracy of their religion. Even so believing in evolution does not prevent you from believing in a god.
    2. Do to inaccuracy, vague nature of theories, and conflicting discussion between biologist to this day on explaining the workings of evolution one could come to the erroneous assumption that evolution never happened, this is a fallacy because in negates the evidence for evolution, just because we don't fully understand it does not mean it did not happen.
     
  15. 786 Searching for Truth Valued Senior Member

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    See you are going into circular reasoning. Sex to Mutation and Mutation to sex. Either way you go CHANCE is what you need for the Evolution theory to work.
     
  16. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    I already agreed that chance is needed for evolution to work, so no need to labour that point.

    My reasoning is not circular, though. If you have questions, please ask them. If you think my reasoning is circular, please say why. Don't just make empty statements.
     
  17. 786 Searching for Truth Valued Senior Member

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    Well the Fossil Record has shown animal come suddenly. This would offend the theory.

    I read a few days ago that a 7 million years old skull was just found in Africa. Which almost looks like if it was a skull of a modern man. Take that as a blow to the theory.

    It is still being analyzed so we will see the results when it all comes out.
    Here are some quotes on this issue. But I'm not here to debate this so, this is only for your information.

    "The fossil has set the cat among the pigeons in the world of Darwinism. In its article giving news of the discovery, the world-renowned journal Nature admitted that "New-found skull could sink our current ideas about human evolution."
    John Whitfield, "Oldest member of human family found," Nature, 11 July 2002

    Daniel Lieberman of Harvard University said that "This [discovery] will have the impact of a small nuclear bomb."
    D.L. Parsell, "Skull Fossil From Chad Forces Rethinking of Human Origins," National Geographic News, July 10, 2002

    The reason for this is that although the fossil in question is 7 million years old, it has a more "human-like" structure (according to the criteria evolutionists have hitherto used) than the 5 million-year-old Australopithecus ape species that is alleged to be "mankind's oldest ancestor." This shows that the evolutionary links established between extinct ape species based on the highly subjective and prejudiced criterion of "human similarity" are totally imaginary.

    John Whitfield, in his article "Oldest Member of Human Family Found" published in Nature on July, 11, 2002, confirms this view quoting from Bernard Wood, an evolutionist anthropologist from George Washington University in Washington:

    "When I went to medical school in 1963, human evolution looked like a ladder." he [Bernard Wood] says. The ladder stepped from monkey to man through a progression of intermediates, each slightly less ape-like than the last. Now human evolution looks like a bush. We have a menagerie of fossil hominids... How they are related to each other and which, if any of them, are human forebears is still debated.
    John Whitfield, "Oldest member of human family found," Nature, 11 July 2002

    The comments of Henry Gee, the senior editor of Nature and a leading paleoanthropologist, about the newly discovered ape fossil are very noteworthy. In his article published in The Guardian, Gee refers to the debate about the fossil and writes:

    Whatever the outcome, the skull shows, once and for all, that the old idea of a "missing link" is bunk... It should now be quite plain that the very idea of the missing link, always shaky, is now completely untenable.
    The Guardian, 11 July 2002

    I'm not going to say much about this discovery. This is all I know so do your own research. I provided you with the quotes so that will give you a place to start.

    Here is the name of the fossil: Sahelanthropus tchadensis

    Evolutionist claim this of being more of an ape-like skull. But don't trust anyone, not even me. You can see the quotes above, and what they suggest about the theory of evolution.

    I'm not going to say anything more about this issue. Because this is ALL I know.
     
  18. 786 Searching for Truth Valued Senior Member

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    All right I show you why I think your reasoning was circular.

    First when we talked about Mutation, we agreed that it depended on CHANCE.

    then you said not everything depends on CHANCE. So said sex could create variation. Then I said that sex cannot creat a new specie. Then you answered it cannot do it alone it would need variations. In other words we are back to the concept of Mutation.

    You just said that sex can't do it alone it needs variations, which would mean Mutation.

    So if it needs Mutation then we can conclude it needs CHANCE because Mutation depends on CHANCE as we both agreed upon.

    That to me is circular reasoning. Mutation to Sex then Sex to Mutation. I hope you understand me.
     
  19. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    786:

    You appear to have plagiarised some of the material in the post before this one. Please cite your sources.

    Regarding your most recent post, I have already agreed that evolution incorporates some elements of chance in the production of variation. I don't know why you're still arguing that point. We agree. Mutation is a random process. Crossing over of genetic material during sexual reproduction is a random process. We agree.

    Natural selection, on the other hand, is not a random process. And that's part of what gives evolution its direction.

    Speciation, as I said, requires variation and genetic isolation (which most often means geographical isolation, too). Variation is produced largely by chance, and natural selection does the rest.
     
  20. 786 Searching for Truth Valued Senior Member

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    Natural Selection can do nothing. It gives you no direction. It only tells us that the "fit" will survive. EVERYTHING is depended on the action of MUTATION. Natural Selection without Mutation cannot do ANYTHING evolutionary. But on the contarary Mutation can do MANY things without Natural Selection. Natural Selection is a theory talking only common sense, which is that the "fit" will survive, nothing else. This to me is not even a theory. Even a child can tell you that the "fit" will survive.

    And on that previous post of mine. I wanted to share what I read. I didn't want any misunderstanding. I also said that that is all I know. So basically I just wanted to tell him what I know. Yeah I copied it but just so nothing "wrong" would come out of my mouth. As I said in my post that this IS what I read, and know. But sorry, for doing that. I see you said that. But I just wanted to present the quotes. As you can see that most of the post is quotes, and the rest is really what I personally wrote, except two sentences.
     
  21. Nasor Valued Senior Member

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    786: Why do you keep obsessing over the fact that mutations occur by chance? I really don’t understand your point. Yes, it is unlikely that any given organism will experience a beneficial mutation – but in a large population that’s constantly reproducing, it’s practically inevitable that eventually an organism will undergo a beneficial mutation that makes it more likely to survive. What’s the problem?
     
  22. ElectricFetus Sanity going, going, gone Valued Senior Member

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    Fossil record, that crap, nothing bets pure genetic relations. The only way it could not be evolution is if a very tricky god made it look like all creatures were related and seemed to descend from common ancestors all the way down to the molecular level.
     
  23. 786 Searching for Truth Valued Senior Member

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    Funny. You believe in the Theory of Evolution which is science, then you deny Paleontalogy which is also Science. Interesting!
     

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