From: Derek Gatherer (email@example.com)
Date: Fri 14 Oct 2005 - 08:36:46 GMT
I'm having real difficulty understanding your line of argument.
>When one is knowledgeable in embryology,
I like to think that I am, having a PhD in it
(evo-devo to be precise with the emphasis more on the devo than the evo) and having spent 10 years as a researcher in the field (1986-1996)
>The embryonic pattern is very close to what
>Stephen J. Gould and al. described and derived
>from the study of geological times. [snip] Being
>so, you can’t seriously expect one to say
>“the physical development of the embryo is in agreement with Darwinism”.
I'm aware of Gould's "Ontogeny and Phylogeny"
work, but I don't think you can then leap to the
conclusion that it is not compatible with
Darwinism. Gould regarded himself as a
Darwinian, and a whole section of "Structure of
Evolutionary Theory" is dedicated to evo-devo. I
think you are mistaken in setting up "punctuated
equilibrium" as a non-Darwinian theory. It's a
theory about the fossil record that has
implications for evolutionary rates and
mechanisms of speciation, and also to a certain
extent inter-species selection, but none of those
things make it un-Darwinian, as Gould himself argued at length.
[snipped bit about chain reactions]
I understand chain reaction as something within
the realms of chemistry. As far as embryogenesis
is concerned, I'm not sure that chain reaction is
the best term to use. There is a sequence of
causes and effects governed by a genetic program,
but is that really a chain reaction? In any
case, I'm not sure why you think a failure, if I
have one, to understand chain reactions, is relevant.
>High school students know these 4 basics; they
>know they apply to all chain reactions no matter
>their chemical, biological, etc., nature. You
>are much beyond the grade “high school
>student”, and what did you say along three short posts?
> > (Nuclear genes) are orders of magnitude more
> important than any slight extra-nuclear or kinetic effects.
Yes, I say that because it is true. There is no
mitochondrial gene that exerts the same effect on
development as, say, fushi tarazu, dorsal, Antennapedia etc.
>What are we supposed to understand? The
>mitochondrial genes are not developmental? The
>mitochondrial genes are not programming?
Yes, that is what is the case. Do you have an
example of a mitochondrial mutation with gross
developmental effects? Where is the
mitochondrial equivalent of bithorax, for instance?
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