February 29, 2020 | David F. Coppedge

A Losing Theory of Evolution

Evolution by gene loss? Are they kidding? Is that how to evolve a giraffe or fruit fly?

To get from a bacterium to a human, Darwin needs to come up with a lot of new genes. How can he do that by losing what he already has? And how did he get the original supply of genes before losing them?

Some organisms do lose genes. For instance, parasites that get nutrients from a host no longer need the genes to acquire them. Flightless cormorants on the Galapagos can dispense with genes for powered flight, using their existing genomes to swim after fish. Blind cave fish can save energy by losing the information to build eyes. But overall, Darwinian evolution must innovate! You can’t lose the genes for wings until you already have them.

Gene loss more important in animal kingdom evolution than previously thought (University of Bristol). Let’s see if this makes any sense at all:

During evolution, organisms can gain new genes to perform new functions, lose other genes that are not used anymore, and recycle old ones into new functions. Previous studies have shown that the acquisition of new genes played a major role in the origin of the animal kingdom, and it is assumed that most organisms become more complex by acquiring new genes.

Dr Jordi Paps from the University of Bristol together with PhD student, Cristina Guijarro-Clarke at the University of Essex, and Professor Peter Holland from the University of Oxford, discovered that gene loss has actually been more important during the evolution of the animal kingdom than previously thought.

Widespread patterns of gene loss in the evolution of the animal kingdom (Nature). Maybe the paper can shed light on this marvelous new discovery that gene loss is more important “than previously thought.” (Thought by whom? Did you think that? Well, you were wrong.)

Here we analyse a sampling of 102 whole genomes including >2.6 million protein sequences. We infer major genomic patterns associated with the variety of animal forms from the superphylum to phylum level. We show that a remarkable amount of gene loss occurred during the evolution of two major groups of bilaterian animals, Ecdysozoa and Deuterostomia, and further loss in several deuterostome lineages. Deuterostomes and protostomes also show large genome novelties. At the phylum level, flatworms, nematodes and tardigrades show the largest reduction of gene complement, alongside gene novelty. These findings paint a picture of evolution in the animal kingdom in which reductive evolution at the protein-coding level played a major role in shaping genome composition.

Published March 1, 2019

It’s not like Darwin is on a fat-loss diet or something. One would think an evolving animal would want to hang on to the complexity it has, not lose it. This sounds like trying to win a race by running backwards from the starting line.

Evolution News had a good laugh at this idea back in 2013.

Advocates of intelligent design can take heart at this paper. That scientists at the NSF-funded National Center for Evolutionary Synthesis would seriously entertain this absurd hypothesis is a sign of general desperation. Darwinists know what they’re up against, they recognize the power of the challenge posed by ID, and they have no rigorous answers.

Evolution by subtraction is the best way to get nowhere fast. Michael Behe is right: Darwin Devolves.

Speaking of Behe, be sure to watch the new episodes of his video series, “Secrets of the Cell.” Episode 3 is up now. When complete, there will be 6 short videos that are winsome, easy to understand and share with those who, coming off D.O.P.E., need some remedial education about biology and design.



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