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Thread: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Quote Originally Posted by digsbe View Post
    I think this unconfirmed study shows natural selection at work and not evolution. They can only speculate, but they cannot prove that these 30 genes they are looking at "evolved" and by random chance gave these people an edge in just 3,000 years.
    Pet peeve # 2: Evolution is not a random process. The genetic variations upon which evolution acts is random, but the selection "process" is not. Since there is a survival benefit to being able to better handle the air pressure there, the selection for genetic material is not random. There is clearly a benefit to these genes, and as such they are more likely to be passed on to the next generation. That is not random.
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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Quote Originally Posted by Redress View Post
    Pet peeve # 2: Evolution is not a random process. The genetic variations upon which evolution acts is random, but the selection "process" is not. Since there is a survival benefit to being able to better handle the air pressure there, the selection for genetic material is not random. There is clearly a benefit to these genes, and as such they are more likely to be passed on to the next generation. That is not random.
    The bolded part is what I am getting at. Evolution states that through random mutations some genes become "better" and more adapted to the environment. Natural selection acts upon these mutated genes and alters the populations genetic makeup over time. The random part is evolution, the selection part is natural selection. The two are not the same, separating existing populations and placing them in different environments will result in natural selection changing the species without any evolution (in the sense of genetic mutations and deleting/new genetic information added) occurring.

    My comment is towards the random process of evolution. It is highly unlikely that in just a few thousand years that 30 or so genes randomly mutated to better adapt these people to living in the mountains.
    Last edited by digsbe; 07-03-10 at 03:30 AM.
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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Quote Originally Posted by Chuz Life View Post
    As I said,... had I read the article more closely,... I would have worded my first post differently.
    I was responding to your second post. rats my response was deleted... oh well.

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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Quote Originally Posted by digsbe View Post
    The bolded part is what I am getting at. Evolution states that through random mutations some genes become "better" and more adapted to the environment. Natural selection acts upon these mutated genes and alters the populations genetic makeup over time.

    My comment is towards the random process of evolution. It is highly unlikely that in just a few thousand years that 30 or so genes randomly mutated to better adapt these people to living in the mountains.
    Evolution acts on a random process, but it is not a random process. This is very much in line with Eldridge and Gould's punctuated equilibrium theory.
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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Quote Originally Posted by Redress View Post
    Evolution acts on a random process, but it is not a random process. This is very much in line with Eldridge and Gould's punctuated equilibrium theory.
    Evolution is a random process. Randomly are genes mutated, and randomly and highly improbably are they ever beneficial to the organism. Because they are beneficial, natural selection acts upon what happened by random chance. Evolution by itself is random, coupled with natural selection it is guided. I just don't think in 3,000 years that the extremely improbable mutations required to alter 30+ genes to adapt a population to live in the mountains could occur. Natural selection would best support this, in that those who did not already have the genes to survive in the mountains died and did not pass their genes on (or they moved back to the lowlands).
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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Quote Originally Posted by digsbe View Post
    The bolded part is what I am getting at. Evolution states that through random mutations some genes become "better" and more adapted to the environment. Natural selection acts upon these mutated genes and alters the populations genetic makeup over time. The random part is evolution, the selection part is natural selection. The two are not the same, separating existing populations and placing them in different environments will result in natural selection changing the species without any evolution (in the sense of genetic mutations and deleting/new genetic information added) occurring.

    My comment is towards the random process of evolution. It is highly unlikely that in just a few thousand years that 30 or so genes randomly mutated to better adapt these people to living in the mountains.
    You yourself have about 100 mutations that your parents didn't have. Do you really mean to say that there couldn't have been one beneficial mutation approximately every hundred years.

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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Quote Originally Posted by digsbe View Post
    Evolution is a random process. Randomly are genes mutated, and randomly and highly improbably are they ever beneficial to the organism. Because they are beneficial, natural selection acts upon what happened by random chance. Evolution by itself is random, coupled with natural selection it is guided. I just don't think in 3,000 years that the extremely improbable mutations required to alter 30+ genes to adapt a population to live in the mountains could occur. Natural selection would best support this, in that those who did not already have the genes to survive in the mountains died and did not pass their genes on (or they moved back to the lowlands).
    Mutation + Natural Selection = Evolution

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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Quote Originally Posted by digsbe View Post
    Evolution is a random process. Randomly are genes mutated, and randomly and highly improbably are they ever beneficial to the organism. Because they are beneficial, natural selection acts upon what happened by random chance. Evolution by itself is random, coupled with natural selection it is guided. I just don't think in 3,000 years that the extremely improbable mutations required to alter 30+ genes to adapt a population to live in the mountains could occur. Natural selection would best support this, in that those who did not already have the genes to survive in the mountains died and did not pass their genes on (or they moved back to the lowlands).
    Five Major Misconceptions about Evolution

    There is probably no other statement which is a better indication that the arguer doesn't understand evolution. Chance certainly plays a large part in evolution, but this argument completely ignores the fundamental role of natural selection, and selection is the very opposite of chance. Chance, in the form of mutations, provides genetic variation, which is the raw material that natural selection has to work with. From there, natural selection sorts out certain variations. Those variations which give greater reproductive success to their possessors (and chance ensures that such beneficial mutations will be inevitable) are retained, and less successful variations are weeded out. When the environment changes, or when organisms move to a different environment, different variations are selected, leading eventually to different species. Harmful mutations usually die out quickly, so they don't interfere with the process of beneficial mutations accumulating.
    We became a great nation not because we are a nation of cynics. We became a great nation because we are a nation of believers - Lindsey Graham

    Quote Originally Posted by Fiddytree View Post
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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Quote Originally Posted by Anarcho-fascist View Post
    You yourself have about 100 mutations that your parents didn't have. Do you really mean to say that there couldn't have been one beneficial mutation approximately every hundred years.
    And the vast majority occur on introns that code for nothing. Most mutations that significantly altered a gene would result in death of the developing fetus or some genetic disease. Out of the billions of base pairs in one's DNA, the mutation has to happen at the right spot for over 30 genes in individuals in just 300 years. Plus, what kind of mutations are these? Simple point mutations? Any kind of beneficial mutation would have to alter the function of the protein to where it becomes more efficient, which most likely would require several mutations and changes in each of the 30 genes being looked at.
    Quote Originally Posted by Anarcho-fascist View Post
    Mutation + Natural Selection = Evolution
    I am focusing on the mutation aspect. You are right in that mutation + natural selection=evolution. I should have more clearly defined that I am focusing on the random mutation aspect to the evolutionary theory and not the distinct and different natural selection part.
    Quote Originally Posted by Redress View Post
    Five Major Misconceptions about Evolution
    There is probably no other statement which is a better indication that the arguer doesn't understand evolution. Chance certainly plays a large part in evolution, but this argument completely ignores the fundamental role of natural selection, and selection is the very opposite of chance. Chance, in the form of mutations, provides genetic variation, which is the raw material that natural selection has to work with. From there, natural selection sorts out certain variations. Those variations which give greater reproductive success to their possessors (and chance ensures that such beneficial mutations will be inevitable) are retained, and less successful variations are weeded out. When the environment changes, or when organisms move to a different environment, different variations are selected, leading eventually to different species. Harmful mutations usually die out quickly, so they don't interfere with the process of beneficial mutations accumulating.
    I am not ignoring the natural selection aspect. I am merely focusing on the chance aspect and stating it is borderline impossible for the right random chances required for natural selection to take effect upon them to happen in just 3000 years.
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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Quote Originally Posted by digsbe View Post

    I am not ignoring the natural selection aspect. I am merely focusing on the chance aspect and stating it is borderline impossible for the right random chances required for natural selection to take effect upon them to happen in just 3000 years.
    And you are basing this statement on what?
    We became a great nation not because we are a nation of cynics. We became a great nation because we are a nation of believers - Lindsey Graham

    Quote Originally Posted by Fiddytree View Post
    Uh oh Megyn...your vagina witchcraft is about ready to be exposed.

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