Junk Is the Essence of Mankind

first_imgChristians may proclaim “God don’t make no junk” but evolutionists boast of our junky heritage.  Erika Check wrote in Nature this week,1 “It’s the junk that makes us human.”  She was referring to non-coding DNA, long considered “junk DNA.”  There is growing awareness that these sections of unclear function are involved in the regulation of the coding genes.  She explains with a design analogy:Anyone who has ever put together self-assembly furniture knows that having the right parts is important, but what you do with them can make or break the project.  The same seems to be true of the vast amounts of DNA in an organism’s genome that used to be labelled as junk.  Studies now indicate that this DNA may be responsible for the signals that were crucial for human evolution, directing the various components of our genome to work differently from the way they do in other organisms.    The findings seem to bolster a 30-year-old hypothesis that gene regulation – not the creation of new genes – has moulded the traits that make us unique.Of the human non-coding regions that differ the most from other animals, most lie near genes coding for brain cell function.  Figuring out what these regions do is a new treasure hunt for geneticists: one researcher said, “Here we have a way of discovering new biology.”  See also Michael Balter’s write-up on this topic in Science Now.1Erika Check, “It’s the junk that makes us human,” Nature 444, 130-131 (9 November 2006) | doi:10.1038/444130a; Published online 8 November 2006.Report card: for finding a new promising path of research, A.  For finding it by accident, C.  For avoiding the discovery because of decades of calling it junk, F.  For saying “it’s the junk that makes us human,” go to the Principal.(Visited 6 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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Whoops, the Wrong Star Exploded

first_img“Our understanding of the evolution of massive stars before their final explosions as supernovae is incomplete, from both an observational and a theoretical standpoint.”  That’s how a paper in Nature begins.1  Avishay Gal-Yam was not kidding; a star exploded that theory says was not supposed to.    The famous supernova 1987A was already an anomaly.  Its progenitor was a blue supergiant.  That fact “required a rethink of stellar evolution models,” they said.  Now, the progenitor of a supernova in 2005 has been identified. The progenitor of supernova SN 2005gl was proposed to be an extremely luminous object, but the association was not robustly established (it was not even clear that the putative progenitor was a single luminous star).  Here we report that the previously proposed object was indeed the progenitor star of SN 2005gl.  This very massive star was likely a luminous blue variable that standard stellar evolution predicts should not have exploded in that state.Massive stars are not supposed to explode during the Luminous Blue Variable (LBV) stage, but this one did.  The astronomers think, based on the unexpectedly low amount of material flung off from the star, that the material collapsed into a black hole 10-15 times the mass of our sun.    How serious is this disconnect between theory and observation?  Gal-Yam told Space.com, “This might mean that we are fundamentally wrong about the evolution of massive stars, and that theories need revising.”  It shows also that “The unexpected explosion could mean other stars may behave in ways not previously expected,” the article said.  Astronomers are scrambling to figure out what happened.    So the tidy models of core collapse of red giants may not be the whole story.  “This also leaves open the question that there may be other mechanisms for triggering supernova explosions,” Gal-Yam said.  “We may be missing something very basic in understanding how a superluminous star goes through mass loss.” 1.  A. Gal-Yam and D. C. Leonard, “A massive hypergiant star as the progenitor of the supernova SN 2005gl,” Nature doi:10.1038/nature07934, published online March 22, 2009.Fundamental misunderstanding, missing something very basic, requiring a rethink…. and this is in one of the hard sciences, not the squishy stuff of which Darwinism is made.  Lesson learned?(Visited 8 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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