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Intelligent Design research published in Nature

The following is an edited extract from a Nature paper. It is an example of real ID research. Notice that the designers only used evolutionary techniques to very slightly tweak the enzymes scaffold structure that had been designed with “borrowed components” from existing enzymes tacked together.  The novel active site was completely intelligently designed. doi:10.1038/nature06879

Kemp elimination catalysts by computational enzyme design

“We designed eight enzymes with computationally designed active sites. In vitro evolution enhanced the computational designs, demonstrating the power of combining computational protein design with directed evolution for creating new enzymes.

Natural enzymes bind their substrates in a well-defined active site with precisely aligned catalytic residues to form highly active and selective catalysts for a wide range of chemical reactions. The design of stable enzymes with new catalytic activities is of great practical interest, with potential applications in biotechnology, biomedicine and industrial processes.

We recently developed our computational enzyme design to create new enzymes for a reaction for which no naturally occurring enzyme exists.

Our in silico design process seems to be drawn towards the same structural features as naturally occurring enzyme evolution.

Following the active site design, a total of 59 designs in 17 different scaffolds were selected for experimental characterization. Eight of the designs showed initial measurable activity.

Directed evolution

We reasoned that in vitro evolution would be an excellent complement to our computational design efforts.

Directed evolution can be valuable both in improving the designed catalysts and in stimulating improvements in the computational design methodology by shedding light on what is missing from the designs.

Seven rounds of random mutagenesis and shuffling followed by screens yielded variants that had 4–8 mutations and an improvement of 200-fold in activity.

The key aspects of the computational design, including the identities of the catalytic side chains, were not altered by the evolutionary process.

The mutations provide subtle fine-tuning of the designed enzyme.

Conclusions

We anticipate the successful use of the combination of computational design and molecular evolution that we have described here, for a wide range of important reactions in the years to come, including design catalysts for more complex multistep reactions.”

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85 Responses to Intelligent Design research published in Nature

  1. Oh yeah!? Who designed the designers? ;)

    Seriously though-this may be a first step to producing nanotechnology.

  2. What does this have to do with the natural world?

    We know that humans are designers. We know that humans can interfere in natural processes. We know that humans can interfere in natural processes by design. But quite what this tells us about natural history, I’m not sure.

  3. “Oh yeah!? Who designed the designers?”

    I just snorted my coffee. I’m going to be chuckling about that all day.

  4. 4

    This is not an ID paper. According to the “Definition of Intelligent Design” link on the right, “Intelligent Design is simply the science of design detection.” There’s nothing about detection here.

    By this measure, every paper in biotechnology is a paper in intelligent design. I guess that’s one way to expand the ID research corpus. Sure beats workin’.

    Moderator
    “The theory of intelligent design (ID) holds that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause rather than an undirected process such as natural selection. ID is thus a scientific disagreement with the core claim of evolutionary theory that the apparent design of living systems is an illusion.”

  5. 5
    Granville Sewell

    I understand your point, which is that what is accomplished here is more due to human intelligence than to selection (as is often the case, particularly in evolutionary computing). But I agree with larrynormanfan that your title is misleading.

  6. Granville and larrynormanfan,

    Hey. The research is showing that intelligent agents are capable of causing the effects known as “novel, functional enzymes.”

    If we demonstrate that intelligence is capable of creating the observed effect, this adds weight to the model of intelligence as the most plausible historical cause for biological enzymes.

    It is similar to how Darwinists run genetic algorithms in an attempt to show that undirected mechanisms plausibly produced biological information in the nature.

    We might as well ask “What do computer chips have to do with biology?”

  7. The only way I see this could become ID research is if someone were handed organisms on which such genetic engineering had been performed and it was required to determine if intelligence was involved in their production or modification from what is know to exist naturally.

    This would then be similar to answering the question of whether HIV was a naturally-evolved virus or one produced as a result of genetic engineering (not that I’m suggesting it was, but the charge has been made, and it’s an interesting question scientifically).

    This would then fall into the area of “edge-of-evolution” detection.

  8. I believe the principles of teleological detection are applicable here. The kind of lab work exemplified in the article could also serve as a case study for validly discerning the difference between randomly occuring versus goal-directed events.

  9. Cans of worms and lots of them. Perhaps the people at NPG are unaware about the consequences that research of this sort may lead to.

    It doesn’t take a scientist to know that anything that is guided towards a specific target or objective will absolutely involve intelligent agency.

    These kinds of teleological experiements create grand opportunities for ID research, especially if combined with Behe’s own innovative lab work. And indeed, this sounds very similar to what is being done at the Biologic Institute.

  10. 10
    Benjamin L. Harville

    Genetic engineering is not a form of evolution. If I go into a laboratory and mechanically alter the genome of a bacterium, I do not then say that it evolved; I say that it was genetically engineered. Scientists studying evolution are interested in what nature can do on it’s own, not what can be done by a human intelligence or any other intelligence. Genetic engineering is a perfectly fine thing to study, but call it what it is, don’t call it evolution.

  11. larrynormanfan wrote: “This is not an ID paper. According to the “Definition of Intelligent Design” link on the right, “Intelligent Design is simply the science of design detection.” There’s nothing about detection here. ”

    Friends of Descent wrote: “In a broader sense, Intelligent Design is simply the science of design detection — how to recognize patterns arranged by an intelligent cause for a purpose.”
    here
    So in the broader sense, we don’t need to detect intelligent design in this article’s case, because we already know that humans are intelligently designing enzymes as well as their active sites.

    So in the narrower sense, intelligent design means:
    “The theory of intelligent design (ID) holds that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause rather than an undirected process such as natural selection.”
    here

    Certain features of the enzymes are intelligently designed creating novel active sites as per the article. How do you not see that that is intelligent design? You have to have concrete in your head to not see that. You have to be a blind and deaf person in a quadriplegic vegetative state to not see intelligent design implicit in the article. DESIGN DETECTION IS IMPLICIT – THIS ARTICLE IS PROOF THAT INTELLIGENT CAUSES CAN PRODUCE NOVEL ENZYMES AND ACTIVE SITES.

    How can you live with yourself thinking that intelligent design plays no role when the article TELLS YOU THAT HUMAN SCIENTISTS ARE INTELLIGENTLY DESIGNING ENZYMES! They are using intelligent causes as well as natural causes (natural selection and chemistry) to produce the results.

    The article mentioned: “We recently developed our computational enzyme design to create new enzymes for a reaction for which no naturally occurring enzyme exists.”

    larrynormanfan wrote: “By this measure, every paper in biotechnology is a paper in intelligent design. I guess that’s one way to expand the ID research corpus. Sure beats workin’.”

    biotechnology – The integration of natural sciences and engineering sciences in order to achieve the application of organisms, cells, parts thereof and molecular analogues for products and services.

    You are right larrynormanfan, every paper in biotechnology is a paper that involves engineering biochemical systems. Engineering IS intelligent design and REQUIRES intelligent agency. What do you mean by “Sure beats workin’”? Are you implying that intelligent design advocates do not work? If so then you are wrong, every human being has the potential to intelligently design, its what we do as humans. THE DESIGN DETECTION ASPECT OF THE DEFINITION OF INTELLIGENT DESIGN IS IMPLICIT IN THIS ARTICLE (HUMANS ACTING ON CHEMISTRY). THE WHOLE POINT TO THIS ARTICLE WAS TO TELL YOU THAT INTELLIGENT DESIGN IS SCIENTIFIC AND HAS BEEN SHOWN TO PRODUCE NEW ENZYMES. PURELY NATURALISTIC CAUSES (CAUSES THAT EXCLUDE INTELLIGENT ONES) HAVE NOT YET BEEN SHOWN TO BE ABLE TO CREATE NEW ENZYMES WITHOUT A CODE (THE ORIGIN OF ANY CODE WHEN STUDIED, IS ALWAYS INTELLIGENTLY DESIGNED, WITH NO EMPIRICAL EXCEPTION TO DATE).

    Please give me your proof that without a programmed code or a scientist, an enzyme would materialize using purely natural causes. Until this happens, all enzymes are intelligently designed (some by humans).

  12. In the article, it makes it more clear to the materialist that intelligent causes can create enzymes. It’s easier then trying to get the materialist to understand that codes themselves are the product of intelligent design which then can be extended to enzymes in general simply because the enzymes were the product of a code with transciption mechanism and protein factory present.

    Again though, without the code or the scientist, no enzyme will be created.

  13. RRE (11)

    Sorry, but I’m with larrynormanfan on this one.

    Certainly, this is evidence of intelligent design of enzymes, but it’s done by humans (as you acknowledge), and using entirely materialistic methods.

    I can’t see that it tells us any more about the natural world than the fact that humans can design and build aeroplanes and amusement parks does.

  14. larrynormanfan:

    “This is not an ID paper”.

    Yes, it is. Or, if you want, this is a paper which has important consequences for the ID theory.

    “By this measure, every paper in biotechnology is a paper in intelligent design”.

    That’s exactly my point of view. Every paper which adds important and pertinent “facts” is relevant to both ID and darwinian theory, which are two alternative theories trying to explain those facts.
    the same facts can be explained by different theories. The duty of the reasearchers is to find the facts. Facts belong to everybody, and everybody can derive his own considerations about them.

    One of the critical points in ID theory is exactly to reason on the morhospace of functional proteins. Therefore, recent research about protein engineering is absolutely pertinent to ID and, in my opinion, devastating for the darwinian scenario.

    The important facts are:

    1) You need some starting point (configuration) which is intelligently designed (or selected from existing ones) to just “land” on a specific island of functionality. Otherwise, the chances of getting function by pure random search are non existent.

    2) It is perfectly possible to use “targeted” random search to “fine tune” the existing function. It will be interesting to compute exactly what probabilistic resources are at play here.

    3) You definitely need a measurement of the function to recognize the fine tuning of the existing function. That is a very important point, which puts this whole kind of procedure in the context of Dawkin’s famous “Methinks it’s like a weasel” example. In other words, you need a definite knowledge of what to search, and a way to recognize it.

    On the contrary, in the darwinian model, any new function has to be selected by blind NS: in other words, it has to be powerful enough to give a reproductive advantage in an existing organism, and therefore be fixed and expanded in the general population of that organism. That is quite a difference.

    Anyway, I am really convinced that reasearch about protein engineering is really going to give us important facts. Perhaps, in a few months, or years. We will be able to discuss of functional proteins morphospace in realistic terms, and it will not be possible anymore to hide behind the excuse that it cannot possibly be known. Then serious probability computations will be made, and we will see if the comfortable slopes so often hypothesized by darwinists really exist.

  15. RME wrote:
    “THIS ARTICLE IS PROOF THAT INTELLIGENT CAUSES CAN PRODUCE NOVEL ENZYMES AND ACTIVE SITES”

    True, but so what?

    Let’s take an analogy from nature. Over long periods of time, rivers will carve out valleys, and depending on silt deposits will sometimes meander in characteristic ways. It is possible, however, to not only divert those rivers, but even create whole new purposes for those rivers through the application of design – e.g., dams, hydroelectric power stations etc. Does that mean the original river ‘features’ were also designed – no, of course not. I think the same applies here – just because something can be further manipulated in new novel ways does not imply that existing features were created this way.

  16. Thankyou RRE.

    Intelligent Design is not restricted to design detection alone.

    In the paper, the scaffold and the active site of this enzyme were both INTELLIGENTLY DESIGNED. The active site using theoretical physics, and the scaffold by combining known protein domains.

    The use of “guided evolution” to tweak the design showed the destructive nature of many mutations, but it also showed that at the present state of our knowledge, we are not able to do fine tuning of scaffolds. It is easier to produce and test a huge number of random substitutions than it is to design, produce and then test the effects on enzyme kinetics of small conformational changes. This is where the guided evolution was used.

    This is brilliant ID research. This is the sort of work that ID proponents should aspire to. This, much more than Craig Venters “copy” cell, is mirroring the work of the Designer.

  17. RRE 10

    “They are using intelligent causes as well as natural causes (natural selection and chemistry) to produce the results.”

    They did not use natural selection. What they did was use deliberate mutation followed by artificial selection to remove the unforseen structural glitches in their designed scaffold that were preventing their designed active site from either accessing the substrate, or releasing the product.

    All mutations to the designed active site reduced or destroyed the function of the enzyme.

    This tweaking sped up the enzyme’s efficiency. This tweaking is the type of process that fits with the limits to evolutionary creativity that Prof Behe wrote about in his book.

  18. SCHeesman says, (8)

    The only way I see this could become ID research is if someone were handed organisms on which such genetic engineering had been performed and it was required to determine if intelligence was involved in their production or modification from what is know to exist naturally.

    If we tried to determine whether an enzyme was natural or man-made, I am not sure excactly what SCHeesman was expecting. According to ID theory, both were probably designed, and therefore the only difference would be the elegance or purpose of the design. It might very well be possible that there would be no detectable difference between the two designs.

    The problem comes with the anti-ID position. Should there be a detectable difference between a humanly designed enzyme and a naturally evolved one? If one answers yes, one is obligated to, at least eventually find it. If the answer is no, then one is admitting the appearance of design in nature. But I suspect that most scientists would go the Dawkins route and claim that unguided evolution can create the appearance of design, and that therefore the appearance of design is illusory. (Daniel King, this might help you see the appearance of design more readily, or at least recognize that it exists.)

    That Dawkinsian claim puts advocates of unguided evolution on dangerous ground. For it is now incumbent upon them to demonstrate that in fact there is a step-by-step pathway from some other protein, or no protein at all, to the finished enzymes in nature. As an added bonus, if there is a failure to find a step-by-step process to account for a man-made enzyme, one could distinguish between natural enzymes, which would be not designed, from man-made, designed enzymes. But I’m not holding my breath waiting for such research to be completed.

    I at one time thought that there might be a way to distinguish between man-made and natural organisms. For example, if we find remains of intelligent organisms (1) on a planet, and learn enough about their physiology and pathology to understand that they need a protein such as insulin in their bloodstream to survive, and we discover that a major cause of disease in organism 1 is the lack of insulin, and if we then find vats of organisms (2) that make that protein but do not need it for their own lifestyle, we might conclude that organism 2 was genetically modified by organism 1 to serve organism 1′s needs.

    The problem is that we also see this in nature. Flowers put out nectar for the needs of bees, hummingbirds, etc. One can claim that the flowers get something out of it, but so do the organisms that produce insulin for humans. They are kept alive precisely because they are useful to humans. One also thinks of aphids that are farmed by ants.

    The bottom line is, I don’t think it is possible to distinguish the design in nature, or at least the design in biology, from that of humans. But it is possible to distinguish easily the design in biology from the non-design, or at least different design, in inanimate objects. In fact, it is arguable that part of the definition of life should be design.

  19. 19

    It doesn’t take a scientist to know that anything that is guided towards a specific target or objective will absolutely involve intelligent agency.

    Permit a scientist to set you straight on Dembski’s theory. The “target” with the simple specification “algorithmically random binary string” is “hit” by no fewer than half of all binary strings of length N or less, where N is some constant of cosmological scale.

    Both close specification and low probability (“complexity”) are essential to complex specified information.

  20. Turner Coates,

    You appear pleased with your post. Let’s do one better:

    “N-length binary string”

    This simple specification is hit by all N-length binary strings, not just half.

    Obviously we must take into account how “specific” the specification is; it is an empirical question and one that Dembski incorporates in his work.

    In the parlance of Dembski, it is like painting a huge target on the wall then claiming accuracy for hitting it.

  21. Turner Coates,

    Sorry, in re-reading your post I think you may have been in agreement with my point. I gues you were just giving your example as a way of pointing out that a specification needs to be specific (excludes other options) in order to qualify as a CSI specification.

    You wrote “close specification” which I assume to mean “only applies to a very small subset of all possible events.”

    Sorry for misreading your post.

  22. 22

    Atom,

    An important aspect of my example was that I included binary strings of all lengths up to N, not just those of length N. To say that if a string is of length N then it is of length N is trivial (in the mathematical sense, not the pejorative).

    I regretted “close specification” after posting. In Dembski’s latest definition of CSI, specificity is essentially a matter of how many signs there are in the “vocabulary” of a semiotic agent, and how many of those signs the agent must string together to describe an event. (From here on I’m relying on hazy memory — forgive any inaccuracy.) Each semiotic agent’s descriptions are ranked from shorter to longer, with ties broken arbitrarily. The specificity of an event is the minimum, over all semiotic agents, of the least rank of all the agent’s descriptions of the event. (A low rank equates to high specificity in the event.)

    What I meant was “high specificity.” Clear as mud, I’m sure.

  23. Coates @ 16,

    The use of the term ‘guidance’ in a lab setting eliminates the formulation of a mathematical filter, since direct observation and physical demonstration are at play. For anything to be guided, it most certainly will require the functioning and activation of the intellect.

  24. Thank you for the clarification TC.

    Let me begin by saying that I think Dembski may have made things more complex than they have to be with his discussion of semiotic agents and their vocabularies…I think this is overkill. There are ways of calculating CSI without reference to this, as was done in the essay on functional information Denyse posted a while back.

    But as for your example, again I think “algorithmically random binary string” is too broad a target to be useful, as is mine. Another broad specification would be:

    “Binary string with 50% 0′s”

    It is a short specification, and for strings up to length N, a lot of strings hit that target. But the target is too broad to be of much use.

    I am pretty certain that Dembski’s work takes into account the “broadness” of the specification, as it is vital.

  25. 25

    RRE, no need TO SHOUT

  26. 26

    The moderator’s addition to my original comment does nothing to refute it, since this paper says nothing about how things are best explained, nor does it critique evolutionary mechanisms.

    Atom, you write,

    If we demonstrate that intelligence is capable of creating the observed effect, this adds weight to the model of intelligence as the most plausible historical cause for biological enzymes.

    Not really. I’m perfectly capable of using intelligence to boil water. This adds nothing to a theory that boiling requires intelligence.

    People here are sure quick to claim every piece of bioengineering for ID, even though these authors are not, to my knowledge, ID advocates. Others are either ignorant or joking when they refer to Mike Behe’s “innovative lab work” in ID, since Behe has published no ID papers arising out of any laboratory work he may have conducted. I’m happy to be corrected on that.

  27. larrynormanfan:
    “nor does it critique evolutionary mechanisms”

    This is not a valid criteria for making a judgment against ID since the theory makes room for evolutionary mechanisms.

  28. 28

    JPC, I was unclear and hasty. I should have quoted from the bit provided by the moderator:

    ID is thus a scientific disagreement with the core claim of evolutionary theory that the apparent design of living systems is an illusion

    This paper does not do that — not even remotely. So how does this support the notion that this is an ID paper?

    I’m glad you responded. After all, you were the one who referred to Behe’s “innovative labatoratory work.” What, precisely, were you talking about? I am unaware of any ID papers coming out of the Behe lab. I’m aware of ID books he’s written, but that’s a different story.

  29. larrynormanfan:
    “these authors are not, to my knowledge, ID advocates”

    Scientific experiments can yield surprising discoveries and applications that might be outside the periphery of the experimenter’s expectations. Advocacy is of no relevance when you have a paper with teleology written all over it and authors that seem to be unaware of it.

  30. larrynormanfan:
    “I am unaware of any ID papers coming out of the Behe lab.”

    Hi Mr. normanfan,

    Well, I know for a fact that Black Box was peer-reviewed because of the technical content. I am quite sure Edge has received the same treatment as well. I will have to check….

  31. 31

    JPC,

    Neither Darwin’s Black Box nor The Edge of Evolution contains or reports any laboratory work from Dr. Behe. Neither book contains any original laboratory work at all. Neither book was peer-reviewed as the term is normally used within science.

    That’s not to say the books don’t have other merits. I’ve read both books (Edge fairly recently) and found them interesting if unconvincing. But they’re not peer-reviewed, and they don’t have anything to do with Behe’s laboratory work.

  32. Not really. I’m perfectly capable of using intelligence to boil water. This adds nothing to a theory that boiling requires intelligence.

    Notice your equivocation. I said the paper demonstrated that ID was capable of producing the observed effect, not required to produce it. (Though I believe it is as well, the paper doens’t show as such, and I never made the claim that it did.)

    If Intelligence is a capable causal class, and no other causal class (unguided natural, random chance, etc) has been demonstrated capable, then ID is in fact the best explanation.

    So please acknowledge that your boiling water example misses the mark.

  33. 33

    Atom,

    It’s not an equivocation: ID is quite firm that intelligence is required for complex natural objects. What really missed the mark is the idea that this is in any way is an ID paper.

    Further, my analogy only misses the mark if I grant that no other processes are capable of producing those effects. And that’s precisely what the evolutionary explanation would dispute. [Cue someone asking me to prove the evolutionary explanation in 3, 2, 1 . . . ]

  34. larrynormanfan,

    This is what I wrote originally:

    If we demonstrate that intelligence is capable of creating the observed effect, this adds weight to the model of intelligence as the most plausible historical cause for biological enzymes.

    You responded:

    Not really. I’m perfectly capable of using intelligence to boil water. This adds nothing to a theory that boiling requires intelligence.

    Let me ask you, how does one offer evidence (“add weight”) in support of a model, if not by showing your mechanism capable of producing the observed effect?

    Does this paper show that intelligence is capable of producing the effect seen? (Yes)

    Does showing intelligence capable “add weight to the model of intelligence as the most plausible historical cause” (like I originally wrote)? (Yes)

    Look at the two quotes above, the first from me and your response. Can you see how you completely miss my point in your haste to show this paper has nothing to do with ID? (Even though it is demonstrating that the ID mechanism is capable of producing the required effect…)

    Sigh.

  35. ID is quite firm that intelligence is required for complex natural objects

    larry, come on. ID simply says that there are three potential candidate causes: natural law, chance, and intelligence. It asks (but does not presuppose) whether or not law and chance alone (or together) can produce certain effects (Functional CSI complexes). It also asks (but does not assume) whether or not Intelligence is capable.

    For the first question, it finds (not assumes) that law and chance have not been demonstrated capable. It also seeks an explanation as to why it has not been demonstrated and finds that mathematically there are very good reasons for this. (Behe’s Edge, Dembski’s work, Sewell’s work, etc.)

    For the second question, papers like this answer the question in the affirmative.

    So this is very much ID research. You don’t have to agree with me, it is clear enough to the impartial observer I’m sure.

  36. 36

    Atom, you write,

    ID simply says that there are three potential candidate causes: natural law, chance, and intelligence. It asks (but does not presuppose) whether or not law and chance alone (or together) can produce certain effects (Functional CSI complexes).

    I’ll leave aside the fact that evolution involves both chance and law working together and does not reduce to one or the other. (Dr. Dembski claims to have addressed that in NFL but I don’t think he’s successful.) I’ll just point to the subtitle of No Free Lunch: Why Specified Complexity Cannot Be Purchased Without Intelligence. “Cannot,” as in intelligence is required for specified complexity. The book is an argument for the central premise of ID: that some things require intelligence.

    I did use your original comment to go back to this central premise; sorry if that seemed to take liberties with your comment. But much greater liberties have been taken with this whole thread’s attempt to hijack a paper — and a whole line of research — for the ID cause.

  37. I’ll just point to the subtitle of No Free Lunch: Why Specified Complexity Cannot Be Purchased Without Intelligence. “Cannot,” as in intelligence is required for specified complexity.

    The “cannot” is a conclusion of the book, not a premise. And it fits nicely with my discussion of how ID type questioning proceeds in post 35.

    Again, if we’re showing that intelligence is at least capable of producing the effect in question, we are adding support for the ID case and doing ID research. We are answering the second question.

    (The third question ID asks, for those who are wondering, is whether or not we see any of these types of complexes in nature. However, we could do tons of ID research without ever looking at nature or biology specifically.)

  38. larrynormanfan

    You have made your point. There is no need to repeat it over and over. It is just that others see it differently.

    Are you saying that the designers of this enzyme were not intelligent or that the enzyme is not designed?

  39. 39

    idnet, I’ll quit this thread after this comment. Thanks for your patience: this post has touched a nerve.

    Atom, I’d say the requirement of intelligence is a premise disguised as a conclusion, since the vast majority of ID supporters find evolution simply unacceptable from the git-go. If it were a conclusion, one would have to imagine (for example) Dr. Dembski seriously entertaining the evolutionary explanation: that is, taking seriously the possibility that it’s true. And I don’t for a moment think that’s happened.

    FWIW, as a Christian, I accept the overall design of things. I like Michael Heller’s view, which I’ve only just learned about, that chance should not be opposed to the divine plan. Earlier I would have described myself as an advocate of Gouldian NOMA, but it’s nice to find a Christian who thinks like Heller. I mention that because my opposition to ID is not atheistic or whatever: I just don’t think ID does much real scientific research, and I think co-opting real scientific research as an ID victory is an exercise in bad faith and sets a terrible witness.

    A side note: Larry Norman, whose work inspired my handle, was a wonderful Christian singer and a brave witness to the world. In many ways he was a man of great integrity: he certainly blows away most of the shallow junk that passes for Christian music these days. Yet he also tended to mythologize his life a bit, to claim more for himself than he deserved. Turns out this behavior may have been a consequence of a traumatic brain injury suffered in an airplane. In any event, he lost a lot of friends as a result, because people couldn’t trust him.

    Here’s my point: ID proponents don’t create an atmosphere of trust when they latch on to any development as an unwitting ID discovery.

  40. The ID interpretation of the article is in one sense completely uncontroversial. Nobody doubts that modern humans can intelligently design enzymes at this point.

    However, the article provides no support for the suggestion that intelligent input is required for enzymes to exist, or that any prehuman intelligent designer did in fact create existing enzymes or any other biological system.

  41. Benjamin L. Harville:
    “Genetic engineering is not a form of evolution…Genetic engineering is a perfectly fine thing to study, but call it what it is, don’t call it evolution.”

    That is a good point, Mr. Harville. So much for the peer-review process, when a prestigious journal fails to notice the difference.

  42. I think Dr. Dembski (and other ID scientists) take the “evolutionary” explanation (NDE) far more seriously than you give them credit for. I think they may take it more serious than Darwinists themselves. How? By asking: “Ok, if NDE is true, what would it be required to do? How much information would it have to produce? What resources would it have available to do this with?”

    These are questions Darwinists themselves ignore and mock those who do ask them. It is not Dr. Dembski’s fault if what he finds (after careful PhD level anaysis) doesn’t bode well for the NDE case.

  43. larry, I believe that Behe’s Black Box was rigorously reviewed by his peers. At least that is what has been claimed by the author. That Behe is misinformed, deceived, or a liar is another story; but to me, he seems like a trustworthy and down-to-earth kinda guy and my intuition forces me to believe him. Now, concerning Edge, I don’t know if it has undergone the same treatment, but judging from the onslought of criticism that Black Box received, it is more than likely that Behe subjected the book to the same standard.

  44. Atom:
    “These are questions Darwinists themselves ignore and mock those who do ask them.”

    That is because Darwin did the same with OOL and the “eye problem.” The only exception, of course, was that he kept his gentlemanly manners.

  45. 40

    “the article provides no support for the suggestion that intelligent input is required for enzymes to exist”

    The article provides incontrovertable evidence that enzymes can be intelligently designed. This is NEW. This isn’t yesterday’s news. This type of research is cutting edge,

    Other than ID, no other experimentally verified method of de novo enzyme design is known. It is simply assumed that enzymes can arise through non directed processes. Assumption is no substitute for experiment.

  46. In defense of idnet.com.au’s OP..

    I think he’s actually on to an attitude that I’ve been hoping to see come out of the ID community: A focus on the plausibility and concreteness of an intelligence designing, in various ways, structures and mechanisms that were previously seen only as a product of nature (with the usual questions about what started and/or guided it).

    Whether these things can originate without intelligent guidance is another question (and I’m not sure that question can be settled scientifically). But it does shed light on what an intelligent force is capable of in concrete, demonstrable terms.

  47. Please give me your proof that without a programmed code or a scientist, an enzyme would materialize using purely natural causes. Until this happens, all enzymes are intelligently designed.

    Actually aldolase have been generated without “programmed code”. Just google “catalytic aldolase antibodies”.

    But wait, I can predict your arguments:

    1. Scientists have been involved which clearly prooves ID.

    2. From a related patent:

    The haptens are designed both to trap the requisite Lys residue in the active site of the antibody, to induce the antibody to form the essential enamine intermediate, and to induce the appropriate binding sites for the two substrates to overcome the entropic barrier intrinsic to this bimolecular reaction.

    Obviously, the scientists put information in the system and the information content can be calculated. Another clear indication for ID.

    3. The mice in which the antibodies have been generated already contained all the information required to form an immune response twowards the hapten. IgH and light chain genes have just been rearranged and v-gene hypermutation can only add only little to the antibodies specificity and the over all information content has not been changed. Again proof of ID.
    So here we are:

    A focus on the plausibility and concreteness of an intelligence designing, in various ways, structures and mechanisms that were previously seen only as a product of nature (with the usual questions about what started and/or guided it).

    All science so far.

  48. sparc

    Clearly antibodies function to disrupt molecular structures. That is one of the ways they defend organisms. If an immune response is mounted to a hapten, and that immune response catalyses a chemical reaction on that hapten, then the immune system is doing what it is clearly meant to do. This is either as the blind watchmaker designed it, or as the Designer intended. I do not think it is an example of an enzyme arising de novo.

  49. —–larrynormanfan writes, “Atom, I’d say the requirement of intelligence is a premise disguised as a conclusion, since the vast majority of ID supporters find evolution simply unacceptable from the git-go. If it were a conclusion, one would have to imagine (for example) Dr. Dembski seriously entertaining the evolutionary explanation: that is, taking seriously the possibility that it’s true. And I don’t for a moment think that’s happened.”

    I have been disciplining myself not to pile on, because you have been taking on so many adversaries all alone. But I simply cannot allow that comment to stand. If the design inference is built into the premise, then the entire exercise is nothing but a ridiculous tautology and a total waste of time. You have fallen into classic error of confusing motives with methods.

    Further, your proposition militates against the idea of logic itself. Religious bias is not going to influence a rigorous and systematically applied methodology. A researcher cannot smuggle ideology into a specifically complex organism, much less can he change the fact that it either does or does not contain 500 bits of coded information. Either the patterns are there or they are not.

    This is ID 101. Creation science is faith based, meaning that it begins with a presupposition; intelligent design in empirically based, meaning that it begins with an observation. Once you begin with a presupposition, ID has left the building.

  50. larrynormanfan

    “One would have to imagine Dr. Dembski taking seriously the possibility that the evolutionary explanation is true. And I don’t for a moment think that’s happened.”

    This is rot!

    We have all considered seriously the possibility that the evolutionary explanation is true. For the person who also considers seriously, the possibility of an “outside” Designer, the evidence is clear. I follow ID because, and only because, I find the evidence compelling.

  51. Paul Giem:

    SCHeesman says, (8)

    The only way I see this could become ID research is if someone were handed organisms on which such genetic engineering had been performed and it was required to determine if intelligence was involved in their production or modification from what is know to exist naturally.

    [Paul] If we tried to determine whether an enzyme was natural or man-made, I am not sure excactly what SCHeesman was expecting. According to ID theory, both were probably designed, and therefore the only difference would be the elegance or purpose of the design. It might very well be possible that there would be no detectable difference between the two designs.

    My premise was that the original population “A” was well specified, and suddenly, from nowhere (and I mean not from a pre-existing unknown population) a variation “B” was found that is a number of single and/or double point mutations distant from “A”. I propose simply that at some time it would be possible to calculate the total probability of moving from A to B, given the measured mutation rates and available generations, and calculate a probability of this occurring, much as has been proposed and estimated from natural outcomes by Michael Behe in “Edge of Evolution”. Should this probability be extraordinarily low, it would be good evidence that intelligence was required to produce the change. I am making an analogy with a multi-step chemical reaction, where output concentrations can be estimated from inputs using known reaction rates, thermodynamics etc.

    “A” may have indeed been designed, but that does not enter into the question of how “B” came to be. Of course it is possible that “B” was also always around, but it’s my argument and I get to set the premise!

  52. larry, I believe that Behe’s Black Box was rigorously reviewed by his peers. At least that is what has been claimed by the author.

    One of the “reviews” was a chat on the phone with someone who had not read it. Some of the other reviews seem to have been rather scathing.

    More at Wikipedia. It links to Panda’s Thumb, which I know you all love, but that’s where the primary evidence (i.e. the words of the reviewers themselves) are.

  53. The article provides incontrovertable evidence that enzymes can be intelligently designed. This is NEW.

    While I don’t dispute that this is an exciting paper, the idea of rational enzyme design and enzyme engineering is certainly not novel. Pubmed searches show papers ranging back into the seventies published on enzyme design, modificationa and engineering.

    In any case, I bet that you can’t find a single biological scientist who would not agree that enzymes can be intelligently designed.

    So while maybe to you, this is a major stepping stone for ID (proving that enzymes can be intelligently designed), this fact has not been disputed in the least by the scientific community.

    Other than ID, no other experimentally verified method of de novo enzyme design is known. It is simply assumed that enzymes can arise through non directed processes. Assumption is no substitute for experiment.

    I thought the development of Nylonase is a rather convincing example of de novo enzyme design without ID. Unless, of course, your hypothesis would be that somebody designed Nylonase by the introduction of a mutation and then released the bacteria back into the wild.

  54. Nylonase is a rather convincing example of de novo enzyme design without ID. Unless, of course, your hypothesis would be that somebody designed Nylonase by the introduction of a mutation and then released the bacteria back into the wild.

    Strawman. That’s fully within the edge of Darwinian processes (although some posit that this system was “designed to evolve” in response to environmental stimulus). Serious ID proponents have never claimed that they cannot produced lower levels of functional complexity. Those single protein enzymes are very simple ones which simply hydrolyze precursors to nylon. That’s a very simple task, which can be done even by small organic catalysts. It’s not CSI, it’s not IC, and it’s been discussed various times on UD before and other places.

  55. Bob O’H @ 52:
    “Some of the other reviews seem to have been rather scathing.”

    Whether scathing or favorable, Black Box was nonetheless reviewed, therefore contradicting statements to the contrary.

    OTOH, I never heard that the review process needed the blessing of a positive appraisal in order to qualify as a bona fide review.

  56. Strawman. That’s fully within the edge of Darwinian processes (although some posit that this system was “designed to evolve” in response to environmental stimulus). Serious ID proponents have never claimed that they cannot produced lower levels of functional complexity. Those single protein enzymes are very simple ones which simply hydrolyze precursors to nylon. That’s a very simple task, which can be done even by small organic catalysts. It’s not CSI, it’s not IC, and it’s been discussed various times on UD before and other places.

    What strawman? idnet claimed the following: “Other than ID, no other experimentally verified method of de novo enzyme design is known.”

    I showed a counterexample: nylonase.

    In addition, Nylonase has about 400 amino acids and random assembly of such an enzyme is surely beyond the UPB. In addition, Nylonase is easily specified as: enzyme that hydrolases Nylon. So, the Nylonase does fulfill the requirements for specified complexity.

    I understand that in the link doubt is cast on how much CSI was added to the system by the frameshift mutation, but on the face of it, this is clearly a counterexample to the claim made by idnet.

  57. hrun,

    Now it could be charged that idnet was not perfectly clear in communicating. I read idnet as saying that any new non-trivial enzymes would require intelligence. If he was referencing any old modification, then he of course was incorrect. But I doubt that is what he meant.

    When ID proponents say something requires intelligence Darwinists typically like to reinterpret that to include trivial examples of non-CSI. Goals thus shifted, Darwinists bring up such examples. But this trait is very annoying. Even if an ID proponent does not clearly state his/her thoughts as such please assume that is what the ID proponent meant.

    Otherwise, your humorous attempt at providing a false positive is wrong; it’s the modification of pre-existing CSI (which Dembski covers in his books if you’ve read them). The modifications don’t qualify as CSI. Try reading the links I supplied.

  58. Otherwise, your humorous attempt at providing a false positive is wrong; it’s the modification of pre-existing CSI (which Dembski covers in his books if you’ve read them). The modifications don’t qualify as CSI. Try reading the links I supplied.

    I did not find an example that calculates the CSI of the repetitive sequence before the frame shift (non-Nylonase) and after the frame shift (Nylonase).

    On the face of it, the Nylonase contains CSI. It appears that Dembski agrees, judging by the link you provided. That means, unless the mutation added CSI to the system, the CSI must have been there prior to the frameshift. Do you know of any calculation of the CSI before and after by anybody from the ID community?

  59. I just want to know why the Japanese have a monopoly on the nylonase issue, since it seems to have not been replicated anywhere else in the planet or followed-up by other non-Japanese researchers.

  60. JPCollado,

    You pose interesting questions:

    Is the whole story a scam?

    Are the Japanese less trustworthy than other scientists?

    This could be a scandal.

  61. I am not aware of convincing evidence about the nylonase issue, though I have searched the internet for it some time ago. All the issue seemed to me rather unconvincing and hypothetical.

    But I will be glad to deepen my understanding of the subject, if someone can point the most convincing references.

    Up to now, I am convinced that nylonase is one of a very restricted repertoire of very dubious examples that darwinists, when really embarassed, resort to in the attempt to show that there are at least one or two examples of how the most revered biological theory of our times should work.

  62. idnet.com.au (wrote #45): “Other than ID, no other experimentally verified method of de novo enzyme design is known…”

    hrun0815 (wrote #56): “…Nylonase has about 400 amino acids and random assembly of such an enzyme is surely beyond the UPB. In addition, Nylonase is easily specified as: enzyme that hydrolases Nylon. So, the Nylonase does fulfill the requirements for specified complexity”

    Patrick (wrote #54): “Serious ID proponents have never claimed that they cannot produced lower levels of functional complexity. Those single protein enzymes are very simple ones which simply hydrolyze precursors to nylon.”

    Even if it was conceded that a de novo enzyme was produced by natural law(s) or chance, and Patrick was wrong, the irreducible core of the system still tells us that a code is there functioning as an instruction set as part of greater machine. It is incredible how it can co-opt nylon as a metabolic resource and survive another day. The funny thing is, intelligent causes are always required in every instance when it comes to the origin of any machine or code, precisely because only our intelligence can produce these constructs, so we know it takes intelligent causes. This particular type of intelligence (machines and codes) should be regarded as a subset of Intelligent Design for which humans are unique in abililty, INNATE if you will, much like the bird making a birds nest. Natural law(s) and chance causes have never to this day been empirically shown to produce a machine or code. When it comes to these constructs, not even the chimpanzee or any other animal for that matter can produce them, only human intelligence can (That we can empirically detect right now). A chimp with funny tools means nothing when you come to understand that the chimp will never add concept onto matter to make a machine or code. If humans and other biological organisms are the only machines possessing a code to build our bodies, then it seems very logical that an intelligent cause (although greater than we can produce in complexity and specificity currently) was responsible as to the origin of such structures, simply because it has not been shown otherwise. So, intelligent causes must be involved in the origin of any machine or code.

    Please come up with any code or machine that can be empirically tested and demonstrated to originate from purely natural law(s) and chance together or separate. If you come up with one, I will concede that ID has lost. CSI, explanatory filter, IC, all of these are excellent tools when truly seeking the correct delineation between intelligent causes and all the other causal forces of the universe. I commend everyone in the ID community for wanting to know the truth in those regards.

    Interesting side note, nylon happens to be one of the few things man-made, which is purely made out of organic elements. Hydrogen, Carbon, Nitrogen, and Oxygen. Biological organisms need these.

  63. Patrick

    Even if an ID proponent does not clearly state his/her thoughts as such please assume that is what the ID proponent meant.

    Thanks for clarifying this.

  64. JPCollado @ 55 – is anyone claiming any more that BDD wasn’t peer reviewed?

  65. Bob, do you mean BBB? Some posters here are under the impression that it was not reviewed by Behe’s peers.

  66. Daniel King @ 60 re: Japanese monopoly on the nylonase issue -
    “Is the whole story a scam? Are the Japanese less trustworthy than other scientists? This could be a scandal.”

    Mr. King, anything is possible these days. Humans by nature are certainly capable of a lot of deception, and scientists are not immune to this. The Hwang Woo-suk scandal is still fresh in my mind, which took a slew of South Korean scientists for a ride. Are we so naïve as to believe that this is an isolated case, never to be repeated again? It is such an attitude that leaves the door open for more of these hoaxes and abuses to abound.

    Of course, woe to me if I were to suggest that a scandal is taking place with the Japanese scientists, without any proof; but, it just seems odd that a significant finding like this has not been pursued further or replicated in other labs. You would think Darwinists will pounce on this and milk it for all its worth. I have as of yet to see an American or European scientist confirming these observed results in scientific journal. It’s not as if we don’t have plenty of plastic and bacteria on our side.

    Your reaction to my comments is well deserved and very natural. In my field of work (audits and investigations), deception and fraud are some of the things I have to always look out for. One way for fraud to creep into a financial system, for example, is through the absence of controls, like the guy writing checks also reconciling the bank statements. It seems like we have the same observation going on here. You need someone else outside your constituency to keep you honest.

  67. I have been thinking about the comments by some that this is not ID research.

    ID maintains that some features of the natural world are BEST explained by intelligence, RATHER THAN by processes like natural selection.

    If enzymes have been designed by intelligent agents, as shown in this post, and no very impressive new enzyme has ever resulted from observed Darwinian processes, then does this paper not support the hypothesis, that enzymes are more likely to be the result of intelligence than of natural selection?

  68. 68

    “and no very impressive new enzyme has ever resulted from observed Darwinian processes.”

    That’s the rub, isn’t it. Nylonase was offered and it was apparently not “impressive” enough. This despite nylonase evolving in response to nylon, a substance which is entirely manmade. In other words, Darwinian processes created a an enzyme that eats up a completely new substance. There’s no way that was front-loaded, and there’s no way that the information required for the evolution of nylonase is old — because the situation is absolutely novel. What’s more, nylonase emerged in a remarkably short time.

    Yet this is not “impressive” enough.

    Here’s the point: no matter what examples are provided, the evidence is never enough. The same refusal accompanies transitional forms (“not transitional enough”), speciation (“not different enough”), etc.

    Give it up, evolutionists.

  69. That’s the rub, isn’t it. Nylonase was offered and it was apparently not “impressive” enough. This despite nylonase evolving in response to nylon, a substance which is entirely manmade. In other words, Darwinian processes created a an enzyme that eats up a completely new substance. There’s no way that was front-loaded, and there’s no way that the information required for the evolution of nylonase is old — because the situation is absolutely novel. What’s more, nylonase emerged in a remarkably short time.

    Yet this is not “impressive” enough.

    larrynormanfan,

    I believe the problem with nylonase was that (as Patrick mentioned) it only took a single frameshift mutation to create it from another enzyme gene. This is not a lot of information that random variation has to produce. It started with a pre-existing enzyme gene (if I remember correctly) changed a small part of it, and got another enzyme gene. Isn’t this what Patrick means by transfer of pre-existing CSI?

    One thing I will give credit for is that a new function (digesting nylon) was created from the old function. It didn’t take much to create it, but it is nice that two functions were so close to each other in the search space. If all functions are near each other in this way, then Darwinism can be true. If I were you, I’d focus on showing each function can be reached from another nearby function. If it can, you will make the best case for Darwinism anyone has seen. You will actually provide evidence for it.

    So I’d hold onto the nylonase example as it is the first step in actually providing evidence that Darwinism is capable of producing biological function. You just need to show that this isn’t an isolated lucky case of one function being near another function.

  70. What is the latest findings or cutting edge research on this Nylonase phenomenon? Can anyone give me the name of an American scientist who has come up with aditional supplemental work?

  71. It didn’t take much to create it, but it is nice that two functions were so close to each other in the search space. If all functions are near each other in this way, then Darwinism can be true

    I am lost. Don’t you define the search space for a given protein over its entire length? From what I’ve read here the likelyhood of evolving nylonase should be so small that it could not happen since the origin of life.

  72. JPCollado:

    The Hwang Woo-suk scandal is still fresh

    Well, the freshest scandal is the paper by Warda and Han published in Proteomics:

    Warda M. and Han J (2008): Mitochondria, the missing link between body and soul: Proteomic prospective evidence.
    Proteomics 8(3):I-XXIII

    The paper was actually refering to a supernatural designer.

  73. JPCollado,

    What is the latest findings or cutting edge research on this Nylonase phenomenon? Can anyone give me the name of an American scientist who has come up with aditional supplemental work?

    You are definitely on to something. I did a PubMed search and couldn’t find anything but oriental authors. As I remarked earlier, JP, the exclusively Asian provenance of this “discovery” that you have so astutely questioned, naturally makes one suspicious that this is a case of scientific fraud.

    Or gullibility.

    Or both.

  74. I am not saying that Nylonase is a fraud. It is no new kid on the block. I looked into it some time ago and was not very impressed. It may be useful to have bacteria that can burn Nylon.

    Nylonase was already known about when ID was born, when DBB and The Design Inference were written. If Nylonase is so impressive, that it can with a single stroke defeat ID, then how could ID be born, and why is Nylonase not repeated always as the single example needed to instantly falsify ID?

    “Here’s the point: no matter what examples are provided, the evidence is never enough.” That goes both ways. I think the bulk of the evidence is on the ID side though. I have no a priori committment to ID. There are plenty of religious believers who think ID is bad science and bad religion. That is the most respectable intellectual position. I happen to think the evidence increasingly supports ID.

  75. sparc @ #72, something’s fishy about that paper….I don’t know, but it’s giving me a bad feeling…hmmmmm…..

    ….this looks like a parody setup as a valid project only to be deflated later and used as a ruse against Sternberg. It wouldn’t surprise me to find out PZ Myers and company using this to their advantage.

    Why on earth would a scientific journal allow the use of the words “mighty creator” as part of their verbiage and explanation? This is a tell-tale sign that Mohammad Warda and Jin Han, whoever they are, were in it for the parodical effect and nothing more.

  76. Ah, my suspicions have been confirmed. At least the following blog is making a connection with creationism.

    Regarding post # 75, see
    http://lippard.blogspot.com/20.....paper.html

    Google false flag. It seems like the same tactics used by international intelligence agencies are being executed here.

  77. nylB (acc. no. X02864) encodes a 392 aa peptide (acc. no. P07062). Wouldn’t make a search space of 20^392?

  78. sparc:

    “Wouldn’t make a search space of 20^392?”

    Yes, that’s correct. The problem is that in my opinion there is no clear evidence of how nylonase arised. The assumptions that it didn’t exist before, and that it arose by a frameshift mutation, and was selected therefore, are indeed assumptions: they may be interesting as a starting point, but they are being pumped up as if they were absolute evidence only because that is conveniente for darwinists as the only known example of a new enzyme arising by mere luck (as darwinists really need tons and tons of mere luck, the simple idea of that is very reassuring for them).

    I find the data about nylonase very confused, and, as usual, forced by ideological presuppositions. Notwithstanding that, it is certainly an interesting issue, and further research about it is certainly warranted. The problem is, maybe darwinists are not so motivated to do further research about that, as they think that they already have their explanation, and that is just what they need.

  79. ….this looks like a parody setup as a valid project only to be deflated later and used as a ruse against Sternberg.

    Please, explain more. Particularly the Sternberg connection.

  80. crow thrall:

    thank you indeed for the link to that very interesting article. I was not aware of it. It very well summarizes many of my perplexities about the issue, and tries to suggest some very reasonable, and deeply interesting, lines of answer.

    That’s exactly a good example of why darwinism ia a real science stopper. We have here a really perplexing example of molecular events, which warrant further investigation and intelligent debate. But has that happened?

    No, official science has provided a highly hypothetical, and in my opinion absolutely unbelievable, explanation for the origin of those molecules (random frameshift mutation), so that they could become an useful tool in their fight against ID. That’s the end of it. A very unlikely model has suddenly become the undisputable truth, and no further analysis, least of all research, has taken place to investigate the many unsoloved problems involved.

    Don Batten’s analysis is especially interesting because it takes into account two extremely important variables of the bacterial scenario, whose potential relevance cannot be overestimated: plasmidia and transposones. It has often been debated here how possible answers to presently unsolvable mysteries are probably to be found in non coding DNA. It has always been my personal conviction that transposable elements must have a fundamental, and yet completely non understood role. It is equally likely that the first clues to understanding that role may more easily be found in simpler organisms, like bacteria. Bacteria have still many things to teach us, as Shapiro has recently debated.

    But, as long as the fog of reductionism goes on blinding scientific thought, researchers will be comfortable only with potential answers which are well inscribed in their current understanding and ideological frame, and will be extremely reluctant to look elsewhere.

  81. crow thrall, thanks for the reference in 79.

  82. Daniel King @ # 60:
    “Are the Japanese less trustworthy than other scientists?”

    Mr.King, you are committing a faulty generalization here. Please correct and re-phrase, or else, people might think that you are in the habit of making such careless logical errors with frequency.

  83. Tremendous research opportunities we have here for IDT.

    Imagine the breakthroughs if we could combine the scientific results of what we have been discussing here so far

    (1) the Nature paper id.net brought that started this thread;

    (2) Behe’s lab work with regard to the evolution of certain viruses and the limits and efficacy of mutations/NS;

    (3) the alleged results on work done with Nylonase;

    (4) Axe’s ongoing research wrt protein folding, and other forthcoming projects at the Biologic Institute;

    And to add to the list, new findings on molecular evolutionary measurements.

    The same could not have been said twenty years ago. Imagine the opportunities twenty years from now!

  84. [...] Here’s a research paper done by University of Washington that was published in Nature: http://www.nature.com/nature/j.....06879.html and http://uwnews.washington.edu/n.....leID=40536. It’s significance to ID Theory is discussed here, http://www.uncommondescent.com.....in-nature/ [...]

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