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DNA Self Assembly, Abiogenesis and How Science REALLY Works

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posted on Apr, 7 2015 @ 11:39 PM
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a reply to: Noinden




When talking about science, one should endeavor to use that meaning over the common meaning


I would agree if it were on a science forum but not in a general; discussion by common people.




posted on Apr, 7 2015 @ 11:41 PM
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originally posted by: peter vlar
a reply to: Jonjonj

And herein lies the problem. You are misinterpreting the premise of the experiment and subsequent paper published in Nature Communications journal. The premise of the aforementioned was not to prove abiogenesis. The paper and experimental data are entirely focused on proving the viability of spontaneous self assembly of molecular fragments ability to form chemical bonds that connect together in long enough chains of polymers to form life without the assistance of any biological mechanism. The article is misleading you into hypothetical territory. If you read the paper which is linked in the OP. There are no hypothesis demonstrated or mentioned in the actual paper.


"The new findings show that in the presence of appropriate chemical conditions, the spontaneous self assembly of small DNA fragments into stacks of short duplexes greatly favors their binding into longer polymers, thereby providing a pre-RNA route to the RNA world," said Clark.


Indeed that has been the problem, I did in fact take this as somehow a somewhat untenable reach for proof of abiogenesis, however your clarification has allowed me to see that that is not the case. As can clearly be seen from both mine and the OP's comments, we were obviously coming from different sides of the argument, for which the fault is mine. Thank you for the clarification.



posted on Apr, 7 2015 @ 11:44 PM
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I would also like to apologise to the OP for my obtuse misunderstanding of the reason for this thread.



posted on Apr, 7 2015 @ 11:45 PM
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a reply to: Char-Lee

Yet (and this is the important bit) when talking about science, and its methods, one must understand a little of the language. It would be like trying to discuss Cricket, with out understanding the rules, you end up looking like a drongo if you have no idea.

So when scientists use the term theory most of us know what that means. My fellow scientists and I make sure of this. So there is not excuse. Those who refuse to acknowledge this tend to have a bias that they wish to push.



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 02:07 AM
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originally posted by: Phantom423

This is how real science is done - it is not the chaotic rhetoric of Creationists who have zip hard evidence to support their claims.

Science is pretty exciting. But how is belittling creationists, because you don't believe in God, exciting to you?



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 06:34 AM
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originally posted by: addygrace
Science is pretty exciting. But how is belittling creationists, because you don't believe in God, exciting to you?


IMHO this is more towards 'Ken Ham' folks who take bible literary and are trying to propagate voodoo science as real science instead someone who just believe in god and keeps his belief private.

This creationist, people who mock science and take fundamentalist approach... or what Father George Coyne calls plague, it calls itself science, but its not.




This whole topic reminds me of Dr. Tyson's statement that every great scientific truth goes through three phases:


“Every great scientific truth goes through three phases. First, people deny it. Second, they say it conflicts with the Bible. Third, they say they’ve known it all along.”



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 07:50 AM
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a reply to: Char-Lee

There aren't a "mass of clues" pointing to intelligent design. All there is is a bunch of reasoning used to fill in the gaps for things that science hasn't gotten around to explaining yet. While that reasoning can't be adequately refuted due to lacking evidence, it certainly isn't evidence of anything. At the end of the day it is still an assumption built off a lack of evidence (in other words a complete guess).
edit on 8-4-2015 by Krazysh0t because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 08:02 AM
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originally posted by: Jonjonj
I would also like to apologise to the OP for my obtuse misunderstanding of the reason for this thread.


Accepted. If you have any questions about the methodology or the experiment in general, I would be happy to answer them.

Keep in mind that this and similar experiments are the ab initio experiments - it will be for future scientists to determine where the limits are, if any, for self asembly of an entire genome of an organism. At that point, the social and philosophical implications of creating a highly organized, functional form of life in the lab will have to be dealt with.



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 08:03 AM
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originally posted by: addygrace

originally posted by: Phantom423

This is how real science is done - it is not the chaotic rhetoric of Creationists who have zip hard evidence to support their claims.

Science is pretty exciting. But how is belittling creationists, because you don't believe in God, exciting to you?



Because they don't believe in science lmao!!!!



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 08:03 AM
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originally posted by: peter vlar
a reply to: Jonjonj

And herein lies the problem. You are misinterpreting the premise of the experiment and subsequent paper published in Nature Communications journal. The premise of the aforementioned was not to prove abiogenesis. The paper and experimental data are entirely focused on proving the viability of spontaneous self assembly of molecular fragments ability to form chemical bonds that connect together in long enough chains of polymers to form life without the assistance of any biological mechanism. The article is misleading you into hypothetical territory. If you read the paper which is linked in the OP. There are no hypothesis demonstrated or mentioned in the actual paper.


"The new findings show that in the presence of appropriate chemical conditions, the spontaneous self assembly of small DNA fragments into stacks of short duplexes greatly favors their binding into longer polymers, thereby providing a pre-RNA route to the RNA world," said Clark.


Thank you, Peter, for making the clarification. I didn't recognize that JonJonj was focusing on abiogenesis. Thanks again.

edit on 8-4-2015 by Phantom423 because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 08:06 AM
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originally posted by: addygrace

originally posted by: Phantom423

This is how real science is done - it is not the chaotic rhetoric of Creationists who have zip hard evidence to support their claims.

Science is pretty exciting. But how is belittling creationists, because you don't believe in God, exciting to you?



Why do you think I'm an atheist? Creationism is not a religion. It's a cult. And this was discussed in another thread on this board. This thread is about the experiment cited in the first post. If you have any questions about, would be happy to oblige.



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 08:11 AM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
a reply to: Char-Lee

There aren't a "mass of clues" pointing to intelligent design. All there is is a bunch of reasoning used to fill in the gaps for things that science hasn't gotten around to explaining yet. While that reasoning can't be adequately refuted due to lacking evidence, it certainly isn't evidence of anything. At the end of the day it is still an assumption built off a lack of evidence (in other words a complete guess).


I disagree.... The concept of intelligent desighn (an unknown omnipotent being who created and maintains the universe) isn't really disprovable. It's too "duex ex machania", it answers ALL questions true or false.


However it's never some one claiming there is some mysterious unknowable creator... It's always someone claiming the Christian bible is the truth. That can and has been totally debunked. Literally every single testable statement has found to be false. 7 day creation, flood myth, exc have all been completely debunked. So where you can't debunk the "god concept", you can debunk specific religions.



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 08:27 AM
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a reply to: Entreri06

That's what I'm saying there is no evidence for a creator but there is no evidence against a creator. All we have is a bunch of logical reasoning (God of the Gaps argument) which cannot be adequately refuted (cannot disprove a negative). You literally repeated everything I just said.



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 08:50 AM
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a reply to: Phantom423

Ok the article makes sense and I understand what they're trying to get at.

I'd like to help clarify a bit more for the lay people out there on the subject of abiogenesis, how this experiment relates to it and other areas of study and inquiry on the subject. If at any moment I am mistaken, please feel free to correct me as I am going off my old college courses and some of my memory may be spotty. Here we go.

What is abiogenesis?
The PROCESS by which living organisms naturally arise from non-living matter.

Which part of the ABIOGENESIS PROCESS did this experiment deal with?
This experiment focused on DNA and how the smaller parts that make up its structure can come together in a natural way without the need for BIOLOGY which basically means cells and other mechanisms that already ARE life.

DNA doesn't seem to need anything to tell it what to do or how to form etc. The basic properties of chemistry and physics of molecules allow for DNA to emerge without the need for intervention from a super natural or un-natural force.

That is science and that's AWESOME. BUT...

Like mentioned before, this experiment is a small piece of a larger puzzle. That puzzle being the process of abiogenesis. This experiment was all nice and dandy but it still falls very short of giving all the answers to how abiogenesis occurs.

Now let's go over other aspects of abiogenesis that weren't part of this experiment.

Ok so we just found out that DNA doesn't need biology to self form. But just DNA isn't life, or more accurately, a living organism. So what constitutes a living organism?

A lot goes into a living organism. The DNA is housed inside a nucleus, which is contained inside a cell membrane. Inside the cell membrane, there are other organelles (important parts inside a cell) like mitochondria (energy providers), ribosomes (protein builders), endoplasmic reticulum and so on.

So this experiment shows that the part of a living organism that carries its genetic information(DNA) can self form. It doesn't show how a cell came to be, or how the cell formed specialized parts, which I think are also important aspects of abiogenesis.

Once the first unicellular organisms were roaming around the earth, abiogenesis was complete. And then began the tale of evolution


But that's for another thread.



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 09:31 AM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
a reply to: Entreri06

That's what I'm saying there is no evidence for a creator but there is no evidence against a creator. All we have is a bunch of logical reasoning (God of the Gaps argument) which cannot be adequately refuted (cannot disprove a negative). You literally repeated everything I just said.


Yea but you left out that the bible can and has been disproven... At least all the testable facts. The concept can't be disproven. The specific religion can tho.



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 09:31 AM
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Am I missing something?? It seems that everyone on this thread omitted acknowledgment of something very important and by all means something that thoughtfully bothers creationists: this proves that simple DNA is able to self connect itself into more complex larger DNA.

From OP:

The new research demonstrates that the spontaneous self-assembly of DNA fragments just a few nanometers in length into ordered liquid crystal phases has the ability to drive the formation of chemical bonds that connect together short DNA chains to form long ones, without the aid of biological mechanisms.


It is simply easy to see why this does not go well with creation folks, as one of their main lines that there is no evidence that simple set of instructions can produce more complex set of instructions (speaking of DNA) and this research proves that view wrong. It is possible, and in lab it happens.

IMHO, this has not much to do with abiogenesis as much as with evolution and creation of more complex organisms.

edit on 8-4-2015 by SuperFrog because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 09:48 AM
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a reply to: Entreri06

That really wasn't my point when I was talking about intelligent design. Of course all Abrahamic religions can be disproven with science, but that doesn't disprove intelligent design (as many spiritualists will be quick to point out when you say things like that). So I considered that point to be offtopic and omitted it.



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 01:17 PM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t




There aren't a "mass of clues" pointing to intelligent design.

And yet there are plenty of scientists who believe, many have come to believe in recent years as we learn more and more about the true nature of our universe!



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 01:21 PM
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a reply to: Entreri06




Literally every single testable statement has found to be false. 7 day creation, flood myth, exc have all been completely debunked. So where you can't debunk the "god concept", you can debunk specific religions.


I would have to say you have not been keeping up!

Still I agree that when people become narrowly focused such as including only ancient scripts that have been chosen out to fit someone's agenda it is very annoying. That said I feel they have a right to their belief and not to be harassed because of it.



posted on Apr, 8 2015 @ 01:21 PM
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a reply to: Char-Lee

So? That isn't evidence. That is just a sloppy appeal to authority fallacy.




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