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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 Goshin View Post
    I'm aware that the process is assumed to be a long-term and gradual thing, according to some versions of evolution (but there are other schools of thought on this as well, regarding the sudden explosion of speciation during certain periods of time).

    I've always felt that one of the weakest links in evolutionary theory is how some of the most extrordinarily useful, specialized and complex things, like eyes, spinal cords, feathers, and a giraffe's neck, are the result of random mutations being selected by environmental pressures. The number of variables that would have to go into the pool to allow for such incredibly complex and dramatically important results would be inconceivably huge. Even given that we're talking about millions of organisms and millions of years, the idea that a sufficient number of beneficial mutations could occur to result in organisms of such vastly greater complexity than their forebears strains the imagination.

    One of the laws of thermodynamics states that systems tend to devolve from more-organized-states to less-organized-states in the absence of outside influence, in other words entrophy. I find it difficult to believe that a paramecium could eventually evolve into an owl, no matter how long the time-scale, without intelligent direction being involved in the process.
    Well, remember that even the most astonishing organs (why leave out the liver? When you think about the number of functions that one carries out you would find it a lot more astonishing than the eye) were extremely crude at one point. However, as each new beneficial mutation took place, those with that mutation lived longer to reproduce (if the environment deemed it advantageous to do so). Fast forward a zillion years and you have something that seems almost too spectacular to believe, but it's actually a pretty straight forward process.

    It's not a weak link in evolutionary theory at all.
    Last edited by Cardinal; 07-03-10 at 02:07 PM.

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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution



    I am predisposed to believe in a Creator, and that He was and is in control of these things. Even if you convinced me that a Creator was possibly not necessary for life to have reached such a level of complexity as exists, I would still believe in Him.

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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Here's a link to the source in case anyone wants to look.
    Genes for High Altitudes -- Storz 329 (5987): 40 -- Science
    During the past 100,000 to 200,000 years, anatomically modern humans successfully colonized a diverse range of environments across the planet. Some of the most extreme of these environments are found on the high-altitude plateaus of Central Asia and the Andes. The Tibetan Plateau appears to have been inhabited for 25,000 years, and permanent settlements have been established at elevations of 3500 to 4500 m (1, 2). Residents of these lofty altitudes descend from a long line of highland ancestors who lived long enough to reproduce in spite of the physiological challenges associated with chronic oxygen deprivation. Thus, studies of indigenous high-altitude residents provide the opportunity to identify genes that may have played a role in hypoxia adaptation. On pages 72 and 75 of this issue, Simonson et al. (3) and Yi et al. (4), respectively, combine genomic and candidate-gene analyses to identify the genetic basis of high-altitude adaptation in Tibetans. Together with another recent analysis (5), the studies reveal that genes in the hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) oxygen signaling pathway have been subject to strong and recent positive selection in Tibetan highlanders.

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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Quote Originally Posted by fishinRod View Post
    people in Denver Colorado live at altitudes of 5,000 feet, thats 16% less oxygen than sea level...whats their deal? the article went on to say that genes in the Tibetans "adapted"


    if humans evolved from monkeys, why do we still have monkeys?
    Ughhh, why don't you do some research. Nobody ever said we evolved from Monkeys. We all evolved from a common anscetor and branched off. So techinaclly we are cousins, Apes being are closest cousin. Notice how bone for bone muscle for muscle Apes and Humans are very similar.

    watch this...Richard Dawkins shows what I am talking about.

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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Quote Originally Posted by BCR View Post
    Ughhh, why don't you do some research. Nobody ever said we evolved from Monkeys. We all evolved from a common anscetor and branched off. So techinaclly we are cousins, Apes being are closest cousin. Notice how bone for bone muscle for muscle Apes and Humans are very similar.

    watch this...Richard Dawkins shows what I am talking about.

    This video right?

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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    dang did I completely forget to include the link...Yes that is the video, I'm tired lol.

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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Quote Originally Posted by roughdraft274 View Post
    The way I see your argument is this:

    The universe and all it's life forms are much too complex to have existed on their own or to have always existed.

    Therefor, I will stipulate an even more complex entity that existed on it's own or has always existed.

    I guess my argument is that if you think that the universe is too complex to have just always existed or to have been created through natural phenomenon that we just don't understand, then you must make the same argument about any proposed God, since a creator would by definition have to be more complex than it's creation.

    Using Ockams razer, we simply reduce "The universe was created by God, who has always existed" down to "The universe has always existed."
    Right. In other words, he is saying 'I don't know how this happened, so therefore this (supernatural being) is how it happened.' I understand his stance, due to his belief in a God, but his statements embrace ignorance, his argument actually uses ignorance as a basis.

    The thing is, we don't understand so many complex things yet. In time, we will figure them out.
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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.
    Evolution is based on natural selection. You cannot have one without the other. In the common ancestor that apes and man have, there were many instances of natural selection, which led to the 2 hominid lines we have today.
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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).
    I don't think we're saying that the genes evolved in only 3,000 years. Let me post the summary on one of the links someone posted here:

    Genes for High Altitudes -- Storz 329 (5987): 40 -- Science

    During the past 100,000 to 200,000 years, anatomically modern humans successfully colonized a diverse range of environments across the planet. Some of the most extreme of these environments are found on the high-altitude plateaus of Central Asia and the Andes. The Tibetan Plateau appears to have been inhabited for ~25,000 years, and permanent settlements have been established at elevations of 3500 to 4500 m (1, 2). Residents of these lofty altitudes descend from a long line of highland ancestors who lived long enough to reproduce in spite of the physiological challenges associated with chronic oxygen deprivation. Thus, studies of indigenous high-altitude residents provide the opportunity to identify genes that may have played a role in hypoxia adaptation. On pages 72 and 75 of this issue, Simonson et al. (3) and Yi et al. (4), respectively, combine genomic and candidate-gene analyses to identify the genetic basis of high-altitude adaptation in Tibetans. Together with another recent analysis (5), the studies reveal that genes in the hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) oxygen signaling pathway have been subject to strong and recent positive selection in Tibetan highlanders.
    Right here it says that the genes have been subject to strong selection. But don't forget natural selection is evolution. The fact that the genes exist in the first place means they must have mutated at some point.

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    Re: Scientists Cite Fastest Case of Human Evolution

    Quote Originally Posted by Goshin View Post
    I'm aware that the process is assumed to be a long-term and gradual thing, according to some versions of evolution (but there are other schools of thought on this as well, regarding the sudden explosion of speciation during certain periods of time).

    I've always felt that one of the weakest links in evolutionary theory is how some of the most extrordinarily useful, specialized and complex things, like eyes, spinal cords, feathers, and a giraffe's neck, are the result of random mutations being selected by environmental pressures. The number of variables that would have to go into the pool to allow for such incredibly complex and dramatically important results would be inconceivably huge. Even given that we're talking about millions of organisms and millions of years, the idea that a sufficient number of beneficial mutations could occur to result in organisms of such vastly greater complexity than their forebears strains the imagination.

    One of the laws of thermodynamics states that systems tend to devolve from more-organized-states to less-organized-states in the absence of outside influence, in other words entrophy. I find it difficult to believe that a paramecium could eventually evolve into an owl, no matter how long the time-scale, without intelligent direction being involved in the process.
    You're misunderstanding the second law of thermodynamics, which says the entire entropy in a closed system increases. All it says is that the entropy of the galaxy is increasing, but we have a sun nearby that provides energy to our local system which is capable of increasing its order because of the input of energy.

    For the complex organs part, there is evolutionary evidence for most organs including the eyes that show that they evolved from simpler systems. Don't forget, this isn't random mutations that occur for a couple of years, this is mutations that occur for millions and billions of years, something difficult to comprehend and imagine.

    Actually, it should be seen as inevitable that things would develop to be more complex and specialized. With selection removing anything that is not beneficial to an organism, its inevitable that over long periods of time organisms would grow more complex and become better adapted to their environment.

    It's like the monkeys typing on a typewriter analogy, over time its inevitable that they will type out something coherent. Same with life, over time its inevitable that something adapted to the environment and complex will develop.

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