Novelty creation is not mutation-driven

By: James V. Kohl | Published on: December 7, 2013

Policy: Twenty tips for interpreting scientific claims

Excerpt 1: “This list will help non-scientists to interrogate advisers and to grasp the limitations of evidence….”

Excerpt 2: “…there are serious problems in the application of science to policy — from energy to health and environment to education.”
My comment: This open access publication An experimental test on the probability of extinction of new genetic variants shows non-scientists that no experimental evidence supports mutation-initiated natural selection or the theory of mutation-driven evolution.
Excerpt: “In 1927, J.B.S. Haldane reasoned that the probability of fixation of new beneficial alleles is twice their fitness effect. This result, later generalized by M. Kimura, has since become the cornerstone of modern population genetics. There is no experimental test of Haldane’s insight… Our study confirms the key results from classical population genetics and highlights that the nature of adaptation can be complex.”
My comment: It’s been 86 years since Haldane’s idea was uncritically accepted by theorists. No experimental evidence ever supported his idea. However, experimental evidence from inbred lines of nematodes (Wilson et al., 2011) can be compared to the lack of experimental evidence that might otherwise have supported Haldane’s idea. His idea can then be dismissed, or placed into the context of a model that links nutrient-dependent amino acid substitutions to adaptations in species from microbes to man.
In my model, massive neural circuit rewiring between nematodes with divergent feeding behavior: the microbivore Caenorhabditis elegans and the predatory nematode Pristionchus pacificus have been attributed to “…an evolutionary novelty unknown from C. elegans or their most recent common ancestor. P. pacificus and its relatives develop teeth-like denticles in their mouth opening and can form two distinct mouth forms (Bumbarger et al., 2013 – p 109).”
Physical evidence of this unknown evolutionary novelty exemplifies
1) de novo creation of the first tooth in the context of
2) de novo creation of olfactory receptor genes that enable nutrient uptake and
3) de novo creation of species-specific pheromones via the metabolism of nutrients.
The de novo creation of teeth is adaptive in the context of nutrient-dependent physiology of reproduction controlled by species-specific pheromones.
For contrast to novelty creation, natural selection is an evolutionary process initiated by mutation that does not have any creative power (see page 196).
Additional physical evidence for the creation of teeth that enable species to adapt to ecological niches and to form social niches that enable neurogenic niche construction (e.g. in nematodes) and socio-cognitive niche construction evidenced in invertebrates and vertebrates can be found with increasing organismal complexity. Adaptations that appeared to enable higher intelligence in some organisms seem to have ended when some people accepted Haldane’s idea of how evolution supposedly occurs outside the context of niche construction.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Want more on the same topic?

Swipe/Drag Left and Right To Browse Related Posts: