Skip to comments.Epigenetics: More Information than Evolution Can Handle
Posted on 01/30/2009 9:13:33 AM PST by GodGunsGuts
Epigenetics: More Information than Evolution Can Handle
by Brian Thomas, M.S.
Living things develop partly according to genetic instructions encoded on their DNA. The study of inheritance has widened the paradigms from genes to genomes, and now recent research has added yet another player to the field. Critical biological information is carried from one generation to the next in systems additional to DNA, called epigenetic factors, say scientists at the Canadian Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH).
Medical doctor Art Petronis and his team at the CAMH compared methylated DNA patterns (possible epigenetic factors) across the entire genome of 114 twins.1 They found that epigenetic factorsacting independently from DNAwere more similar in monozygotic [identical] twins than dizygotic [fraternal] twins.2 Having developed from the same egg, monozygotic twins had more similarities in their patterns.
Not long ago, it was thought that only the gene portions of DNA contained sufficient code to direct the development and operation of mature organisms. The remaining non-gene portions of DNA were thought of as accumulated junk left over from eons of evolution. This was definitively demonstrated to be false in the summer of 2007, when bioinformaticians discovered that almost all the DNA is used, if not for coding traits, then perhaps for regulating cell processes.3 Now, not only does it seem probable that the entirety of DNA contains useful information, but epigenetic factors are additional informational structures necessary to access, interpret, and process that genetic information.
Each layer of integrated information within cells strengthens the case for the intelligent creation of these living systems and against the natural development of them. One of the reasons that long-time atheist Antony Flew became a theist was the presence of genetic instructions [that] are not the kind of information you find in thermodynamics; rather, they constitute semantic information. In other words, they constitute meaning.4
So, where did all this information come from? The origin of each newly discovered, meaning-rich information scheme, such as these epigenetic factors in twins, must be explained. If the biological information in genes alone is inexplicable by natural forces like evolution, then the additional information in non-gene DNA and in epigenetic factors is even less so. The biblical concept of an all-wise Creator is a vastly superior explanation for its origin.
1. Kaminsky, Z. A. et al. 2009. DNA methylation profiles in monozygotic and dizygotic twins. Nature Genetics. 41 (2): 240-245. Advance online publication January 18, 2009, accessed January 20, 2009.
2. Rethinking the Genetic Theory of Inheritance. Centre for Addiction and Mental Health news release, January 19, 2008.
3. The ENCODE Project Consortium. 2007. Identification and analysis of functional elements in 1% of the human genome by the ENCODE pilot project. Nature. 447: 799-816.
4. Flew, A. and R. A. Varghese. 2007. There Is a God: How the Worlds Most Notorious Atheist Changed His Mind. New York, NY: Harper Collins, 129.
Thanks for the ping!
“God’s ways are above our ways, God’s thoughts are above our thoughts; Who has known the mind of God?” paraphrased.
“The biblical concept of an all-wise Creator is a vastly superior explanation for its origin.”
On what conceivable basis is this limited to the “biblical” creator? Why not the creator God Brahma in the Hindu vedas? Why not the polytheistic Greek creator gods? Why not the myriad Native American creator animals and spirits? What shred of evidence exists that the biblical god (Yahweh) was responsible? I guess the creatonist peer reviewers of this piece let that little oversight slip by.
On what conceivable basis is this limited to the biblical creator? Why not the creator God Brahma in the Hindu vedas? Why not the polytheistic Greek creator gods? Why not the myriad Native American creator animals and spirits?
Well, let’s see their works, and how well they stand up to scrutiny to logic. Make a convincing argument for us that Americans are willing to abandon their Christian beliefs and buy your premise.
Why not an anamisticpantheisticpolydeistpagan?
(Sung to the tune of “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocius.”)
But in answer to your question, two reasons:
1 - The Living Logos
2 - The Empty Tomb