Context is everything to theorists who exclude biological facts

May 18, 2014 | James Kohl

Biophysical constraints that enable the intermolecular tethering of RNA to DNA also link the epigenetic landscape to the physical landscape of DNA via conserved molecular mechanisms in species from microbes to man. Similarly, nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled ecological adaptations link ecological variation to biodiversity with no need for any theories about mutations, natural selection, and evolution. Indeed, “Three [other] studies have characterized the full complement of RNA folding in cells. They find large numbers of secondary structures in RNA, some of which may have functional consequences for the cell.”

The functional consequences are manifested in cell type differentiation in individuals of species from microbes to man. So, why is the intermolecular tethering of RNA to DNA being ignored?

In Kohl (2013), I mentioned that “Evolutionary psychologists and other social scientists, for example, refused to tether their hypotheses to a new discipline called ‘neuroevolutionary psychobiology’, to neurogenetics (Zoghbi & Warren, 2010), or to any biologically based discipline whatsoever (see for review Panksepp, Moskal, Panksepp, & Kroes, 2002).”  Nothing that comes out of the mouths of social scientists has changed during the past few decades, and the influence of social scientists on serious scientists has become clearer.

In Roles of Mutation and Selection in Speciation: From Hugo de Vries to the Modern Genomic Era, the authors wrote: “…we will not consider geographical and ecological factors because of space limitation. Our primary purpose is to clarify the roles of mutation and selection in the evolution of reproductive isolation…” Apparently, the social scientists have convinced at least one geneticist to believe in their pseudoscientific theories. In Mutation-Driven Evolution, additional attempts were made to eliminate biophysical constraints and geographical and ecological factors from consideration so that only evolutionary theory is considered.

With the second edition of his book: Pheromones and Animal Behavior, Tristram Wyatt apparently will continue to divert attention away from biologically-based cause and effect and keep trying to interpret the epigenetic effects of food odors and pheromones in the context of evolution. “The aim of the book is to provide a synthesis of the subject, bridging the divides between chemists and biologists, between those studying vertebrates and invertebrates, between ecologists, molecular biologists and neurobiologists, and most importantly, giving the whole an evolutionary context.”  

Why is it important for Wyatt to place the entirety of what is known about nutrient-dependent ecological variation and pheromone-controlled ecological adaptations into an evolutionary context? The fact that no experimental evidence of mutations and natural selection suggests they could possibly lead to biophysically-constrained species diversity should be enough to eliminate the pseudoscientific nonsense of pheromones that somehow evolved or of species that somehow evolved.

For comparison to what Nei and Wyatt are trying to do, Denis Noble addressed biological facts in the context of evolutionary theory in a recent interview.

Replace the Modern Synthesis (Neo-Darwinism): An Interview With Denis Noble

I liked the part where people finally are told that Haldane, Fisher, Sewell Wright, Hardy, Weinberg et al., invented the theory of evolution and defined it, which led to the teaching of wish fulfillment based on unverified assumptions like the one about accumulated genetic mutations being “…enough to change one species to another….”

What amazes me is that many people accepted what they were taught about evolution and believed it was true. Finally, someone else is telling them that they were taught to believe in pseudoscientific nonsense: Denis Noble said: “…gradual mutation followed by selection has not, as a matter of fact, been demonstrated to be necessarily a cause of speciation.”

What does that fact tell you about Nei’s attempts to eliminate geographical and ecological factors from consideration and tout mutation-driven evolution? What does it tell you about Wyatt’s attempts to place what is known about pheromones into an evolutionary context? What Nei and Wyatt seem to be saying is that others should continue to ignore biologically-based cause and effect so that they can sell books that focus on evolutionary theories, which have never been supported by experimental evidence. However, Wyatt has taken the pseudoscientific nonsense further than anyone before him by commenting on the science of human pheromones:  “But sadly, these are fraudulent claims supported by dodgy science.” Let’s compare his claims about evolution and human pheromones to the claims supported by science, and see who is supporting the fraudulent claims of evolutionary theorists.

In 1996 we linked pheromones to alternative splicings of pre-mRNA and cell type differentiation in species from yeasts to mammals. (That’s why my question above arose about why the intermolecular tethering of RNA to DNA is being ignored.)

In 2000, others linked our model of hormone-organized and hormone-activated mammalian behavior to insects.

In 2001, we linked human pheromones to hormone-organized and hormone-activated behavior.

In 2005, others linked nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled hormone-organized and hormone-activated behavior to life history transitions in the honeybee model organism.

However, since the publication of our book on human pheromones in 1995, no experimental evidence of biologically-based cause and effect has linked mutations and natural selection to the evolution of biodiversity. Claims that the role of human pheromones should be viewed in the context of an invented theory of evolution should be viewed in the context of Wyatt’s definition of pheromones, and compared to the 1959 definition: ”Pheromones are defined as substances which are secreted to the outside by an individual and received by a second individual of the same species, in which they release a specific reaction, for example, a definite behavior, or a developmental process.”  Anyone who thinks that either food odors or pheromones should epigenetically effect the hormones that affect the development of behavior in insects and humans in the same manner is probably a theorist who knows nothing about conserved molecular mechanisms of cell type differentiation manifested in the morphological and behavioral phenotypes of species from microbes to man.

If context is everything to theorists, they may want to see: Nutrient-dependent/pheromone-controlled adaptive evolution: a model and Human pheromones and food odors: epigenetic influences on the socioaffective nature of evolved behaviors. As with anything I have published or presented during the past 3 decades, the context of my two most recent publications falls outside the pseudoscientific nonsense of evolutionary theory, and places the role of food odors and pheromones into what has been neuroscientifically established.

My review of Wyatt’s first edition of this book is here.

Mark Sergeant’s review of the second edition of my book (co-authored by the late Robert T. Francoeur) is here.

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Soft atheism: a case for Creation

May 18, 2014 | James Kohl

The Case for ‘Soft Atheism’

By GARY GUTTING
 

Excerpt: “…much as I admire Dawkins’s work in evolutionary biology and in enhancing the public understanding of science…”

My comment: The case against evolution.

Quantitative analysis of RNA-protein interactions on a massively parallel array reveals biophysical and evolutionary landscapes

Biophysical constraints that enable the intermolecular tethering of RNA to DNA also link the epigenetic landscape to the physical landscape of DNA via conserved molecular mechanisms in species from microbes to man.

Mutations perturb the biophysical basis of one-carbon metabolism, DNA methylation, and amino acid substitutions that stabilize the organized genome. Thus, mutations perturb the consequences of sequence-function relationships. However, mutations are typically considered by theorists to somehow result in biodiversity.

Ultimately, the theorists tend to claim there is scientific proof that evolution (the null hypothesis) of biodiversity has occurred via mutations (e.g., perhaps via natural selection), despite the fact that no experimental evidence supports that theory. For contrast, serious scientists continue to provide experimental evidence that integrates physics, chemistry, and molecular biology to refute evolutionary theory.  See for example: Genes without prominence: a reappraisal of the foundations of biology. PDF opens here.

Minimally, it makes sense for some theorists to now examine their atheism and soften their approach to those who tout Creation and religious beliefs until experimental evidence is found that supports the pseudoscientific nonsense associated with beliefs in evolution theory.

Evolutionary theorists who wait until their theories have completely disappeared in the light of molecular biology, which obviously incorporates biophysical constraints, may be too late for face-saving measures.

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More of Feierman’s pseudoscientific nonsense

May 12, 2014 | James Kohl

The moderator of the ISHE’s human ethology group posted the full text of the article linked below.

Replace the Modern Synthesis (Neo-Darwinism): An Interview With Denis Noble

He quoted from the article and emphasized the text he quoted.

My comment: “…gradual mutation followed by selection has not, as a matter of fact, been demonstrated to be necessarily a cause of speciation…

This conflicts with the representations made here, like “Random mutations are the substrates upon which directional natural selection acts.”

The reason for the conflict is clear: “W]hat Haldane, Fisher, Sewell Wright, Hardy, Weinberg et al. did was invent…. The anglophone tradition was taught. I was taught, and so were my contemporaries, and so were the younger scientists. Evolution was defined as “changes in gene frequencies in natural populations.” The accumulation of genetic mutations was touted to be enough to change one species to another…. No, it wasn’t dishonesty. I think it was wish fulfillment and social momentum. Assumptions, made but not verified, were taught as fact.

Teaching unverified assumptions that were made in efforts associated with wish fulfillment by social scientists is the same as teaching pseudoscience. The psedoscientific nonsense has stopped in most discussion groups. Will it ever stop here?

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The moderator, Jay R. Feierman, edited my post and left only the quote:  “…gradual mutation followed by selection has not, as a matter of fact, been demonstrated to be necessarily a cause of speciation…” He obviously does not want others to realize that “Random mutations are NOT the substrates upon which directional natural selection acts.” He’s been touting that pseudoscientific nonsense since we first met in 1995 — even after I detailed what what known about biologically based cause and effect in species from microbes to man.

Jay R. Feierman has contributed more pseudoscientific nonsense to discussions than anyone else I have ever met. There’s no sign that he will stop doing so.

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Inventing evolution: explanations via assumptions

May 12, 2014 | James Kohl

by Susan Mazur

Author, ‘The Altenberg 16: An Expose of the Evolution Industry’

Excerpt 1): “DNA on its own does absolutely nothing until activated by the rest of the system through transcription factors, markers of one kind or another, interactions with the proteins. So on its own, DNA is not a cause in an active sense.”

Excerpt 2): [W]hat Haldane, Fisher, Sewell Wright, Hardy, Weinberg et al. did was invent…. The anglophone tradition was taught. I was taught, and so were my contemporaries, and so were the younger scientists. Evolution was defined as “changes in gene frequencies in natural populations.” The accumulation of genetic mutations was touted to be enough to change one species to another…. No, it wasn’t dishonesty. I think it was wish fulfillment and social momentum. Assumptions, made but not verified, were taught as fact.

Excerpt 3): “…gradual mutation followed by selection has not, as a matter of fact, been demonstrated to be necessarily a cause of speciation.”

Explaning assumptions led to inventing evolution. For comparison see: Nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled ecological adaptations: from atoms to ecosystems

Abstract: This atoms to ecosystems model of ecological adaptations links nutrient-dependent epigenetic effects on base pairs and amino acid substitutions to pheromone-controlled changes in the microRNA / messenger RNA balance and chromosomal rearrangements. The nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled changes are required for the thermodynamic regulation of intracellular signaling, which enables biophysically constrained nutrient-dependent protein folding; experience-dependent receptor-mediated behaviors, and organism-level thermoregulation in ever-changing ecological niches and social niches. Nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled ecological, social, neurogenic and socio-cognitive niche construction are manifested in increasing organismal complexity in species from microbes to man. Species diversity is a biologically-based nutrient-dependent morphological fact and species-specific pheromones control the physiology of reproduction. The reciprocal relationships of species-typical nutrient-dependent morphological and behavioral diversity are enabled by pheromone-controlled reproduction. Ecological variations and biophysically constrained natural selection of nutrients cause the behaviors that enable ecological adaptations. Species diversity is ecologically validated proof-of-concept. Ideas from population genetics, which exclude ecological factors, are integrated with an experimental evidence-based approach that establishes what is currently known. This is known: Olfactory/pheromonal input links food odors and social odors from the epigenetic landscape to the physical landscape of DNA in the organized genomes of species from microbes to man during their development.

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Oliver Sacks: Nature employs conserved molecular mechanisms

May 10, 2014 | James Kohl

The Mental Life of Plants and Worms, Among Others

Oliver Sacks

Oliver Sacks concludes: “Nature has employed at least two very different ways of making a brain—indeed, there are almost as many ways as there are phyla in the animal kingdom. Mind, to varying degrees, has arisen or is embodied in all of these, despite the profound biological gulf that separates them from one other, and us from them.4″

My comment: Conserved molecular mechanisms link the epigenetic landscape to the physical landscape of DNA in the organized genomes of species from microbes to man via experience-dependent changes that lead to the differentiation of cell types in individuals of different species. Ecological variation results in the ecological adaptations manifested in morphological and behavioral phenotypes.

Oliver Sacks attributes biologically-based cause and effect to ‘Nature” and avoids any mention whatsoever of mutations, natural selection, and evolution. Others would do well to follow his lead, since he has moved across species with examples of nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled ecological adaptations that eliminate pseudoscientific theories about evolution from any further consideration whatsoever. Clearly, it is sensing and signaling that is required for the ecological, social, neurogenic, and socio-cognitive niche construction that is manifested in increasing organismal complexity. If mutations, natural selection, and evolution were the cause of increasing organismal complexity, Oliver Sacks would probably have mentioned that possibility.

See also:

Nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled ecological adaptations: from atoms to ecosystems by James V. Kohl

The Mind’s Eye by Oliver Sacks

The Scent of Eros: Mysteries of Odor in Human Sexuality by James V. Kohl and Robert T. Francoeur

The Mind’s Eyes: Human pheromones, neuroscience, and male sexual preferences by James V. Kohl

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