VOLUME 45, NUMBER 4 SPRING, 2009 ABSTRACTS
Neandertal DNA and Modern Humans
The variation of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) between modern humans and Neandertal sequences lie outside the mtDNA sequence variation within modern humans. This variation has led several researchers to conclude that Neandertals did not contribute to modern human DNA and are a separate species that went extinct in Europe. It is feasible that DNA can be retrieved from specimens that died thousands of years ago, given the ideal preservation conditions and extraction protocols. However, DNA also decays as the organism decomposes. Spontaneous hydrolysis, oxidation, and nucleotide modifications are a few of the processes that cause DNA decay and likely interfere with reliably obtaining a mtDNA sequence that accurately reflects the Neandertal mtDNA sequence.
In addition to DNA decay, contamination of samples is also apparent in published Neandertal mtDNA sequences. A comparison of conserved sequence block 2 (CSB2) in hypervariable region II (HVRII) between Neandertal mtDNA and modern man, primates, and other mammals indicate that excess thymine in CSB2 of published Neandertal mtDNA is likely the result of contamination.
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Evidence for the Lack of Snake Evolution
The fossil record of snakes, when reviewed, shows no evidence for the origin of snakes by neo-Darwinian evolution. The most common evolutionary theory is that modern snakes developed from four-legged reptiles that lost their legs. As evidence for this theory, evolutionists point to snake spurs and putative vestigial leg structures that exist on some modern snakes. These spurs and other structures are not evidence of legged ancestors, but rather are functional organs that have an important role in mating. It is also shown that evolution from tetrapod to snake would require major anatomical changes in the skeleton and the body organs as well as the production of several new organ systems, such as the sensory system.
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Mutation And Natural Selection: The Central Dogma of Neo-Darwinian Evolution
Per A. Larssen
The central dogma of neo-Darwinism is: Mutations provide variety that is selected by natural selection. Mutations and natural selection are ultimately the only driving force of evolution, but they are effective only if one or more mutations prove beneficial to an organism in a given environment. In evolution, natural selection can do nothing without mutations. Since macromutations are virtually all near-neutral or harmful, micromutations are the only means by which new species could possibly evolve. The probability that micromutations will lead to new species is so low as to be close to zero. One reason is the net deterioration of the genome that occurs as a result of mutations, especially near-neutral mutations, which selection and medical advances cannot counteract. Furthermore, nonrandom “mutations” are controlled by in-built cellular processes and, therefore, cannot be a cause of evolution. A large number of studies clearly show that the central dogma has failed, and this devastates the credibility of neo-Darwinism. Furthermore, the increasing knowledge of the immense complexity of life at the molecular level has buttressed both the Creation and Intelligent Design movements.
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Lysenkoism The Tragedy of Government-Enforced Darwinism The Effect of Darwin on Soviet Communism
The story of the Russian scientist Lysenko is a tragic example of what can happen when the science establishment and the government uncritically support Darwinism and oppose competing theories of origins. The enforcement of Darwin’s ideology by government and organized science had disastrous effects on Russian agriculture, which led to major repercussions to the Russian economy, contributing to the Soviet famines that killed multimillions of people. Only when the tragedy became all too evident did the public and academia rise up to resist the Lysenko-Darwin orthodoxy and work to correct the harm that it caused in the Soviet Union. This incident is an important lesson for current governments that support neo-Darwinism and persecute Darwin dissenters.
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