Darwinists try to come to terms with horizontal gene transfer
|April 9, 2012||Posted by News under horizontal gene transfer, News|
Where bacteria mutate simply by sharing genes, not by Darwinian struggle, survival of the fittest, etc.
From “Study Shows Unified Process of Evolution in Bacteria and Sexual Eukaryotes”
(ScienceDaily, Apr. 5, 2012), we learn,
But how an advantageous mutation spreads from a single bacterium to all the other bacteria in a population is an open scientific question. Does the gene containing an advantageous mutation pass from bacterium to bacterium, sweeping through an entire population on its own? Or does a single individual obtain the gene, then replicate its entire genome many times to form a new and better-adapted population of identical clones? Conflicting evidence supports both scenarios.
In a paper appearing in the April 6 issue of Science, researchers in MIT’s Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) provide evidence that advantageous mutations can sweep through populations on their own. The study reconciles the previously conflicting evidence by showing that after these gene sweeps, recombination becomes less frequent between bacterial strains from different populations, yielding a pattern of genetic diversity resembling that of a clonal population.
The “single individual”would be vastly more suited to Darwinism (“survival of the fittest”) than the gene sweep, which has been generally conceded (including in the authors’ paper) to be the way it really happens.
The release reads somewhat confusingly, probably because a Darwinian thesis is being confuted by evidence; most researchers prefer to talk around such matters.
The problem no one wants to confront is that if lateral gene transfer is a usual way bacteria mutate, then Darwinism (natural selection acting on random mutation) does not create new information but merely winnows it – which is the role ID theorists assign to it.
Then what is the source of new information?