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Experimental Data Force Researchers to Admit There’s “No Such Thing As Junk RNA”
Evolution News & Views ^ | October 23, 2009 | Casey Luskin

Posted on 10/26/2009 7:57:10 PM PDT by GodGunsGuts

Experimental Data Force Researchers to Admit There’s “No Such Thing As Junk RNA”

Originally, proponents of neo-Darwinian evolution lauded “junk” DNA as functionless genetic garbage that showed life is the result of blind and random mutational events. Then “junk” DNA was disproved by the discovery that the vast majority of DNA is being transcribed into RNA. Did the failure of this Darwinian assumption cause evolutionists to terminate their love affair with biological “junk”? Of course not. They just shifted their argument back, claiming that the cell is full of “junk RNA”—DNA that is being transcribed into RNA but still does nothing in the cell. Earlier this year we reported on a Nature paper suggesting function for “junk” RNA. Now a Science Daily NewsArticle is confirming that finding. Aptly titled “No Such Thing As 'Junk RNA,' Say Researchers,” the article reports that very small strands of RNA termed “usRNAs” (unusually small RNAs) perform important functions related to gene regulation.

Once again, the Darwinian “junk” mindset seems to have held back such discoveries, as the authors report, “until we did our experiments, we didn't realize that RNAs as small as 15 nucleotides, which we thought were simply cell waste, are surprisingly stable, and are repeatedly, reproducibly, and accurately produced across different tissue types. … We have dubbed these as usRNAs, and we have identified thousands of them, present in a diversity that far exceeds all other longer RNAs found in our study." One of the study’s authors, Dr. Bino John, concluded, "These findings suggest that usRNAs are involved in biological processes, and we should investigate them further."

While it’s heartening to learn they’re now on a better path towards fruitful research, it seems that progress is only made once experimental data—and not evolutionary presumptions—are permitted to guide scientific research. It’s no secret that the Darwinian-based “junk” mindset has hindered research into the actual function for biological features thought to be functionless evolutionary garbage. A 2003 article in Science explained how “junk” thinking has “repelled mainstream researchers” from studying the function of such important genetic structures:

Although catchy, the term ‘junk DNA’ for many years repelled mainstream researchers from studying noncoding DNA. Who, except a small number of genomic clochards, would like to dig through genomic garbage? However, in science as in normal life, there are some clochards who, at the risk of being ridiculed, explore unpopular territories. Because of them, the view of junk DNA, especially repetitive elements, began to change in the early 1990s. Now, more and more biologists regard repetitive elements as a genomic treasure."

(Wojciech Makalowski, "Not Junk After All," Science, Vol. 300(5623):1246-1247 (May 23, 2003).)Also in 2003, researcher John Mattick stated in Scientific American that the failure to recognize certain types of “junk” DNA as functional was “a classic story of orthodoxy derailing objective analysis of the facts” that “may well go down as one of the biggest mistakes in the history of molecular biology."

Of course, an intelligent design paradigm would have predicted function for “junk” DNA or “junk” RNA all along, perhaps leading scientists to “investigate them further” much sooner.



TOPICS: Culture/Society; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: antiscienceevos; biology; catholic; cellbiology; christian; corruption; creation; darwiniacs; dna; evangelical; evolution; evoreligionexposed; genetics; genome; godsgravesglyphs; intelligentdesign; judaism; molecularbiology; protestant; science; scientism; templeofdarwin

1 posted on 10/26/2009 7:57:10 PM PDT by GodGunsGuts
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To: metmom; DaveLoneRanger; editor-surveyor; betty boop; Alamo-Girl; MrB; GourmetDan; Fichori; ...

Ping!


2 posted on 10/26/2009 7:58:28 PM PDT by GodGunsGuts
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To: GodGunsGuts; editor-surveyor
Of course, an intelligent design paradigm would have predicted function for “junk” DNA or “junk” RNA all along, perhaps leading scientists to “investigate them further” much sooner.

I've never seen people in such denial about things simply because they don't like the reasons others have.

It was the evos who claimed that there was *junk DNA*. Creationists denied that it was junk and predicted that it would prove to be useful after all because God wouldn't create something useless.

So, evos didn't like the reasoning and deride and ridicule creationists for that and we now know who was right.

I don't see any *scientific* justification for labeling something *junk* just because scientists don't see any immediate use for it. And then they complain about creationists not having a sound basis for their rationale.

Go figure....

3 posted on 10/26/2009 8:13:25 PM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: GodGunsGuts
It is the ultimate admission of ignorance, coupled with arrogance, to label that which he doesn't understand as "junk."

But then when the driving force is perversion, what's to understand?

4 posted on 10/26/2009 8:14:41 PM PDT by Publius6961 (Â…he's not America, he's an employee who hasn't risen to minimal expectations.)
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This still doesn’t explain the average democratic voter...


5 posted on 10/26/2009 8:18:53 PM PDT by The Magical Mischief Tour
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To: metmom

I just happened to be browsing through the following when I read your reply:

http://biologicinstitute.org/2009/10/06/the-science-of-denial/#more-48


6 posted on 10/26/2009 8:21:16 PM PDT by GodGunsGuts
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To: Publius6961

Actually, they thought they did understand “junk” DNA. They figured that evolution is an untidy, trial and error process that generates lots of functionless DNA that accumulates in the genome like junk. In short, it was a prediction of neo-Darwinian evolution that was applied to non-coding DNA, only to find out after decades of assuming that it was functionless “junk” that the non-coding regions are probably even more functional than the genetic DNA!


7 posted on 10/26/2009 8:28:48 PM PDT by GodGunsGuts
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To: metmom
^God wouldn't create something useless.^

Explain Joe Biden then!

8 posted on 10/26/2009 8:51:14 PM PDT by the anti-liberal
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To: GodGunsGuts

I expect a flurry of denials and “we never really said it was “junk” type arguments.


9 posted on 10/26/2009 8:56:31 PM PDT by count-your-change (You don't have be brilliant, not being stupid is enough.)
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To: count-your-change

IOW...the usual denials from the usual suspects.


10 posted on 10/26/2009 8:59:55 PM PDT by GodGunsGuts
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To: GodGunsGuts

“By junk we didn’t mean useless, just that they were stored away like that antique in your basement”. right.


11 posted on 10/26/2009 9:14:24 PM PDT by count-your-change (You don't have be brilliant, not being stupid is enough.)
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To: GodGunsGuts

Thanks for the ping!


12 posted on 10/26/2009 9:20:15 PM PDT by Alamo-Girl
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To: GodGunsGuts

Your average pitchfork wielding neolithic caveman villager thinks a Cray supercomputer is simply some sort of newfangled rock, and a byte is what happens when you run fast and Rex runs faster.
(I guess that makes me an above-average pitchfork wielding neolithic caveman villager)

Is not beauty in the eye of the beholder?


13 posted on 10/26/2009 10:27:23 PM PDT by Fichori ('Wee-Weed Up' pitchfork wielding neolithic caveman villager with lit torch. Any questions?)
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To: GodGunsGuts

I can’t tell you of all the countless hours I’ve spent on this forum debating evolutionists who throw the junk argument out there.

This is usually put forward as part of a larger category of arguments that claim instances of an apparently flawed creation to be evidence AGAINST an Intelligent Creator. Usually this comes in nearly the same breath as why, they say, Intelligent Design can never be science because it does not meet Popper’s criteria of falsifiability. (It is supposedly not falsifiable and yet proven false at the same time.)

As it turns out, not surprisingly, their “junk of the gaps” logic was flawed after all. Just because we do not know the purpose of something does not mean a purpose does not exist.


14 posted on 10/26/2009 10:50:31 PM PDT by unlearner (You will never come to know that which you do not know until you first know that you do not know it.)
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To: GodGunsGuts

OK.....what was called junk DNA due to a lack of a known function is now found to have a function.

.....and this is supposed to mean something?


15 posted on 10/27/2009 5:08:43 AM PDT by ElectricStrawberry (Didja know that Man walked with vegetarian T. rex within the last 4,351 years?)
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To: metmom
Creationists denied that it was junk and predicted that it would prove to be useful after all because God wouldn't create something useless.

I suspect, as a creationist, that there is some amount of degraded DNA out there since the Fall. God would not create something useless, but the Creation is not in its perfect, created state.

I suspect that 'junk DNA' will turn out to be much like 'vestigial organs' - massively overstated by evolutionists because of their paradigm, yet with a small remnant of truth. For just as the blind eyes of cave fish and withered wings of flightless island cormorants, etc., seem to be irrefutable examples of vestigial structures, so some DNA does seem clearly degraded and non-functional.

But all of this points back to a time when those structures and DNA did have a function. This is de-evolution, not evolution, and so it is rather ridiculous of evolutionists to bring it up. It is evidence for a degenerating world, not evidence of the opposite such as they need. (For creationists believe in a dynamic world dying since the Fall, not stasis as evolutionists caricature.)

16 posted on 10/27/2009 5:25:40 AM PDT by Liberty1970 (Democrats are not in control. God is. And Thank God for that!)
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To: the anti-liberal

Do I have to? :)

Even Biden wouldn’t be useless if he let God make something of him.


17 posted on 10/27/2009 5:25:44 AM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: metmom

Biden is a useful “counter-example”.


18 posted on 10/27/2009 5:26:24 AM PDT by MrB (The difference between a humanist and a Satanist is that the latter knows who he's working for.)
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To: ElectricStrawberry

“junk DNA” was supposed to be, along with mutations thereof,

the source of new structures and functionality of the next stage of evolved critters.

It was also used as the “get around” for irreducible complexity.


19 posted on 10/27/2009 5:27:58 AM PDT by MrB (The difference between a humanist and a Satanist is that the latter knows who he's working for.)
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To: MrB

Seeing as irreducible complexity is solely a manuifactured term used to push ID, I find no reason why anyone needs to figure out a way to “get around” it.

When I learned of junk DNA, there were no real theories of function. There were guesses about past function, but nothing more was said of it.


20 posted on 10/27/2009 6:02:49 AM PDT by ElectricStrawberry (Didja know that Man walked with vegetarian T. rex within the last 4,351 years?)
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To: GodGunsGuts
They figured that evolution is an untidy, trial and error process that generates lots of functionless DNA that accumulates in the genome like junk.

Spoken like someone who has all the "experience" of reading "science" writers like Brian Thomas MS*

Very plainly, you don't know WTF you're talking about and making it up as you go to your flock in your echo chamber is what you're limited to.

Junk DNA was labelled as junk DNA very simply because it had no known direct function. Not that it had no function.....that it had no KNOWN function....and ever since it was dubbed "junk DNA" in the early 70s.....ever since it was shown that there was DNA with no KNOWN function, that there was non-coding DNA....REAL scientists have been trying to find its function while your "science" writers have been "writing"...

21 posted on 10/27/2009 6:31:14 AM PDT by ElectricStrawberry (Didja know that Man walked with vegetarian T. rex within the last 4,351 years?)
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To: Liberty1970; MrB

What’s ludicrous is the intemperate labeling of things that we don’t understand.

Scientists have ended up with egg on their faces more times than they can count because of rash pronouncements of *This is the way IT IS, PERIOD.* only to find out later that it wasn’t.

If they’d stop acting as if everything they conclude was written in stone, they’d gain a whole lot more credibility. People would be more inclined to believe them when they state something then. As it is, why should anyone trust them at this point with their track record?


22 posted on 10/27/2009 8:13:51 AM PDT by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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