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The Scientific Impossibility of Evolution

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posted on Oct, 16 2018 @ 07:59 AM
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originally posted by: peter vlar

"Epigenetic mechanisms are the primary modulator of all genes."

No, they aren't and the papers that you believe support that position, as usual, fall very short.


You literally will disagree with anything I say. Epigenetics are the primary modulator of all genes. I have sent several sources that show that is the case involving the lactase gene, what do you think on the contrary is the primary modulator of all genes?



All this is saying is that epigenetics play a role in how the gene expresses itself. If the mutation had not occurred then there wouldn't be genes there to express the trait in the first place.


Whether the lactase gene is mutated or not, it still undergoes genetic regulation through epigenetic mechanisms. All genes have this sort of regulation. I'm not sure why you are arguing this point, it is well established in scientific literature that genes are regulated through epigenetic mechanisms.
edit on 16-10-2018 by cooperton because: (no reason given)




posted on Oct, 16 2018 @ 03:29 PM
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a reply to: cooperton

No, I do not literally disagree with everything you say. I only disagree with what you are wrong about. Typically, when someone is pointed out an error, they would engage in due diligence and look at both sides of the argument and investigate the subject matter. You give the impression that you’re simply quote mining citations that you believe support your position. All I’m doing is pointing out that the papers do not actually say what you claim they do. Perhaps I should be a little less sardonic and more civil in my responses to you and I own up to the right here in a public forum. So I do apologize for the snarkiness. From some people perspective though, I becomes exceedingly frustrating to repeat the same thing over and over, providing copious citations and even contact information to people who have worked on specific digs and finds references and despite being shown what the papers actually state, you stuck to your guns regardless. I’ve been forced to confront my own biases in a Anthropology and change my views more than once in the last 21 years. It’s what we do when you think critically and follow the evidence as opposed to only looking at information we believe will confirm our own preconceived notions. I think you would be surprised if you were to attend a conference with aanthropologists and see the fighting and bickering. There are a lot of varying ideas at all times competing with one another. Some hypotheses die a slow death and other flourish based on the veracity of the data.
One of the reasons I suggested contacting Lee Berger at U of Witwatersrand is because unlike a lot of people in this field, Lee actually makes all of his work available to anyone who wants to see it. His approach is revolutionizing paleoanthropology and how we will conduct research and publish moving forward. John Hawked at U of Wisconsin as well is a very approachable guy who will respond in kind. I met Lee Berger a few years ago when he gave an invitation only speaking engagement about H. Naledi and he is genuinely an incredibly nice and humble guy who will talk your ear off if you let him. And so I did. His work on the Australopithecus Sedona site as well is Beyond amazing. Those results and the remains are likewise, available to anyone. So I do sncerely apologize for my confrontational tone and I’ll try to bring that down a notch or 2

I don’t disagree that epigenetics play a role in gene expression. That’s not what I’m arguing against. You're trying to state that epigenetics are the primary force behind evolution and adaptive morphological characteristics in an effort to falsify the MES. The Synthesis part of the phrase means that genetics was folded into evolutionary theory as we learned more. As epigenetics are a process that can regulate genes and their expression, it still falls under the Modern Evolutionary Synthesis. Further more, had there not been the specific LCT mutation that Noinden and I both brought up,
there wouldn’t be a gene to regulate. The mutation comes first. Then the regulatory aspects come into play. If lactase persistence were a strictly epigenetic effect, then it should be a worldwide phenomenon. But it isn’t. It’s still limited to the 3 pastoral groups of herder who independently developed this mutation without contact. I’m not saying epigenetics don’t play any role, only that it isnt the primary mover and shaker behind evolutionary adaptations.



posted on Oct, 16 2018 @ 03:40 PM
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originally posted by: cooperton
Considering epigenetics are the main controlling factor of all genes (and therefore proteins), it seems it is your burden to prove that the lactase gene would be an exemption from this rule.


Complete nonsense. It's not the main factor. Where do you come up with this stuff? Genetic mutations are the main factor of genetic changes. They happen every single replication, while epigentic changes are rare in comparison. You are claiming evolution is impossible because there are many types of mechanisms for genetic change/expression. That is ridiculous because epigenetic changes do not negate genetic mutation or natural selection. It is simply gene expression that changes during an individual's lifetime. It doesn't actually change the genes or alter the code, it changes what is expressed by turning certain genes on or off as a response to environmental pressure.

I'm not sure how this could possibly be an argument against evolution. It doesn't come close, let alone demonstrate that it is impossible. Epigenetics works alongside evolution, not in place of it.


edit on 10 16 18 by Barcs because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 16 2018 @ 03:48 PM
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a reply to: cooperton

When you are wrong, you will be disagreed with. You are arguing with people who have an education in the area, and who may have done work in the area. I know I have neighbour.



posted on Oct, 16 2018 @ 07:01 PM
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a reply to: Noinden

Lots of us have first hand experience. The first paid work I had was measuring attachment point scars and then running the numbers to determine muscle mass. I've worked at Archaeological digs in Upstate NY (Ft Johnson, Erie Canal, Ft. Orange which is now Albany), cleaned and prepared remains for casting moulds with a tooth brush and dental pick and have

And that's just getting my hands dirty, not the countless hours of research, data compilation and everything else that goes into a thesis.

It's why I get frustrated when people misinterpret papers and have the audacity to lose their collective minds when nobody agrees with them and they claim it's just because they don't believe in the 'fairy tale of evolution' or whatever nonsensical scientific misunderstandings they're throwing out on that particular day.

The entire 'epigenetics are the primary mover and shaker of biological evolution' motif is an attempt to make it look like they're using science to disprove science. In the end, people reply with the pertinent sections of the paper highlighted and they ignore it. That isn't having a discussion. It's pouting.



posted on Oct, 16 2018 @ 07:57 PM
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a reply to: peter vlar

I will be honest, I am not sure he has access to the papers he is citing, let alone having read them, or understanding them. I return to the fact epigenetics is used like the word quantum at times. In that, it is poorly used.



posted on Oct, 16 2018 @ 11:45 PM
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a reply to: Noinden

Absolutely, it's the new keyword used to imply that they are suddenly on board with science because they think it falsifies the MES somehow while attributing far more to epigenetic processes than they actually encompass. Sure, they can affect how so,e genes express themselves but the gene had to mutate for the epigenetics to affect it. Like with LCT. If it really was epigenetics being the main force behind adaptive traits, then the entire world would have lactase,persistence and nobody would need the LCT mutation because the epigenetic mechanisms would do it all. But it isn't the case. Only those with the LCT mutation which we have pinpointed both geographically and chronally and only the descendants of the three groups that developed the mutation are able to produce lactase into adulthood. It's a pretty easy concept to understand.



posted on Oct, 17 2018 @ 02:30 PM
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a reply to: cooperton


originally posted by: cooperton

2) Lactase is a gene



originally posted by: peter vlar
That one you got right, bravo!


Lactase is not a gene. Lactase is an enzyme that breaks down lactose.



posted on Oct, 17 2018 @ 02:38 PM
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a reply to: peter vlar

originally posted by: cooperton
There are already studies demonstrating this:

Study 2018



originally posted by: peter vlar
This paper shows thst they used a technique used for investigating epigenetics in order to better understand the DNA methylation of the LCT

More specifically this study elucidates the predictive power of methylation to that phenotype, which could not be done with just the genotype alone.

a reply to: peter vlar

originally posted by: peter vlar
I don’t disagree that epigenetics play a role in gene expression. That’s not what I’m arguing against. You're trying to state that epigenetics are the primary force behind evolution and adaptive morphological characteristics in an effort to falsify the MES. The Synthesis part of the phrase means that genetics was folded into evolutionary theory as we learned more. As epigenetics are a process that can regulate genes and their expression, it still falls under the Modern Evolutionary Synthesis


Not speaking for Coop here, but I'd like to throw in my 2c. I can understand the reason why you must uphold the sanctity of the MES, given your seemingly accomplished background in Anthropology/Paleontology, (kudos to you btw) and the fact that Paleontology was one of the central tenets of the MES along with Darwinian Selection and Mendelian Genetics. These three things make up the core of the theory and define the "laws" by which evolution is supposed to occur. Your view of evolution, as well as your research I'm sure, relies heavily on this theoretical framework, as it should.

Now as far as I'm aware, the MES, while it has accepted some other aspects of evolution (like development), has not opened up to include Non-Mendelian inheritance systems (e.g. epigenetic systems/polygenic traits). I could be wrong on this, but I haven't found anything in the literature. Any reference to these seems to be associated with the call to extend the synthesis, which hasn't been done.


originally posted by: peter vlar
Further more, had there not been the specific LCT mutation that Noinden and I both brought up,
there wouldn’t be a gene to regulate. The mutation comes first. Then the regulatory aspects come into play.

But there wasn't a mutation to LCT. Specifically, they were SNPs to the regulatory region of LCT (MCM6). Depending on who you ask, they will say that a mutation is considered to have a frequency of less than 1% where a polymorphism(SNPs) is distinguished as being greater than 1%. Regardless of this distinction, I'm having a hard time understanding why a mutation must precede any regulatory effect, epigenetic or otherwise. The whole point of an epigenetic regulatory element is that it doesn't require a change to the underlying sequence to have an effect on the outlying phenotype. The environment alone can induce the phenotypic change to an entire population


originally posted by: peter vlar
If lactase persistence were a strictly epigenetic effect, then it should be a worldwide phenomenon.

Why is that? If you can't digest milk then dairy is likely not part of your regular diet at this point. Back when LP first propagated, dairy may have been the only main food source for those populations. They may have needed to rely on this form of protein due to the lack of other options, so they had no choice but to consume it. I think it was this forced toxic shock to the body that induced these polymorphisms.

And to double down on that idea, I also think the same thing happened with the hypoxic response to hemoglobin in mountain dwelling humans like the Tibetans, Andeans and Ethiopians, (and even animals) to low levels of oxygen.


originally posted by: peter vlar
Absolutely, it's the new keyword used to imply that they are suddenly on board with science because they think it falsifies the MES somehow while attributing far more to epigenetic processes than they actually encompass.

Why are you under the supposition that epigenetics doesn't play a bigger role?


originally posted by: peter vlar
Sure, they can affect how so,e genes express themselves but the gene had to mutate for the epigenetics to affect it. Like with LCT. If it really was epigenetics being the main force behind adaptive traits, then the entire world would have lactase,persistence and nobody would need the LCT mutation because the epigenetic mechanisms would do it all. But it isn't the case. Only those with the LCT mutation which we have pinpointed both geographically and chronally and only the descendants of the three groups that developed the mutation are able to produce lactase into adulthood. It's a pretty easy concept to understand.

1st) Why must a gene mutate first before any epigenetic effect is to take place? None of the mechanisms involved in epigenetic regulation or inheritance absolutely require a previous genetic mutation - that's the whole idea behind epigenetics. Not saying it doesn't happen that way in some cases, just that mutation is not a requirement.

2nd) LCT didn't mutate. The regulatory region of MCM6 did. And it all occurred relative to the presumably heavy consumption of dairy at the time.

3rd) I’m still not clear why lactase persistence would be ubiquitous if solely due to epigenetics. In others words, I’m not seeing how this trait being caused by epigenetics (say via epimutation or mutational hotspots at CpG sites caused by increased methylation) should mean it becomes ubiquitous around the globe, unless everyone was relying on dairy products as their main source of nutrition.

(long post, sorry)

edit on 17-10-2018 by PhotonEffect because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 17 2018 @ 02:41 PM
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Nice information in the OP.

I really enjoy your knowledge about the subject as reading through your thread shows you have.

I have found that for most people who are sincere simple arguments like you gave in the OP are suffiecent to bring awareness to the fact of the existnece of a Creator. The Bible even states it much more simply and with undeniable logic when it states very matter-of-factly:

Of course, every house is constructed by someone, but the one who constructed all things is God." Hebrews 3:4.

Just want to add that you may not want to waste your time with people who don't want to be persuaded with evidence and convincing arguments of truth. Really, all they do is sap your energy and time that is better spent elsewhere. And many of them do it on purpose.



posted on Oct, 17 2018 @ 02:43 PM
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a reply to: Noinden


originally posted by: Noinden
a reply to: cooperton

If it were epigenetics, and only epigenetics, one would not be able to explain it away as an SNP mutation (which it is) and that there are variations of it.

Stop making things up.


At least 5 variants within the MCM6 region (not LCT) independently emerged in various pastoral populations across widely spread out geographical/temporal locations (Europe, Asia, Africa). These SNP's emerged as dairy intake became a major part of their diets.

There is even evidence that indicates that T-13910 may have emerged independently in two different haplotypes. i.e. the same SNP occurred in two very different populations at two very different times. (source)

How does genetic convergence like this happen by luck or random chance unless it's directly associated with the heavy intake of dairy past the weaning stage? Is that where the questions are supposed to stop?

If you're selling the story about these mutations being coincidental then I ain't buying it.



posted on Oct, 17 2018 @ 02:46 PM
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a reply to: Barcs


originally posted by: Barcs
Complete nonsense. It's not the main factor. Where do you come up with this stuff? Genetic mutations are the main factor of genetic changes. They happen every single replication, while epigentic changes are rare in comparison.


I understood the claim to be that epigenetics is the major modulating influence of gene expression, not that epigenetics are behind the hardwired changes - even though not enough research has been put forth to fully elucidate this yet (but it's already been shown to be possible).

Phenotypes are the expression of the underlying genome and epigenome (amongst many other things). A mutation may happen but it doesn't necessarily mean a phenotypic change will follow. On the flip side, phenotypes can vary quite a bit across a population all harboring the same genome. Doesn't natural selection have to act on a phenotype first?

(I'm out)



posted on Oct, 17 2018 @ 03:06 PM
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a reply to: PhotonEffect

All of which I cited in earlier replies. Zthe poiint here is we are dealing with somone (coop) who is not literate in the science. I went for the low detail explanation. I will add, that at no point have I mentioned anything about the cause of the mutations. I pointed out that they are MUTATIONS, not epigenetic alterations. SNPs are not epigenetic.



posted on Oct, 17 2018 @ 03:45 PM
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originally posted by: PhotonEffect
a reply to: cooperton


originally posted by: cooperton

2) Lactase is a gene



originally posted by: peter vlar
That one you got right, bravo!


Lactase is not a gene. Lactase is an enzyme that breaks down lactose.



You're quite correct. That one is on me for rushing while trying to type on an iPad. When I'm wrong, I own up to it contrary to what cooperation says.


To be brief, and I apologize because you did give lengthy and detailed replie, which I do appreciate....

I have zero issues with epigenetics as a mechanism for gene regulation and expression. The issue I disagree with is that Cooperton et al feel that epigenetics alone are the primary force behind adaptive traits. While I may have been incorrect on a couple of small-ish points, genetics isn't my field and the genetics I tend to pay the most attention to come from people like Svante Paabo because it reflects on my own past research pertaining to Neanderthal and H. Sapiens admixture in the Levant. I appreciate being shown the correct information when I am incorrect and don't fault anyone for pointing out my errors so thank you for the corrections.

While epigenetics may not be on a specific list of accepted roles in biological evolution, you have to be honest in that it's a very new field and new claims require extraordinary evidence. Beyond minor changes in gene expression and regulation, I haven't seen that burden of proof to be met as yet. I as always, am open to new data and evidence. I know I often come across as the cross eater for a strict adherence to the MES but that isn't the case. I'm simply a strict adherent to following the evidence.

Cooperton comes across as though he has found fatal flaws in how evolution occurs simply because of epigenetics and that isn't the case. Mutations, SNP's and genetic drift are far more important to the evolution of biological organisms, based on the evidence we currently have to work with. I take zero umbrage with hypothesizing potential new avenues and have investigated more failed hypotheses than those that eventually proved to be true. Between advocating punctuated equilibrium and admixture between European Neanderthal and African H. Sapiens, I was an easy target 20 years ago. Today however, I'm the one laughing.

That's how good science works, you build the hypothesis, investigate the veracity of it and attempt to falsify it. And you do all of that with an open mind because wrong answers are what often lead us in the right direction.

If epigenetics eventually proves to play a larger role as we are able to investigate genetics deeper, I have no problem whatsoever and I'm sure it will be a part of the formal curriculum just like genetic drift and P.E. It is however going to be a long hard road to demonstrate that epigenetics become heritable traits. I don't see it and there certainly isn't the evidence for The inheritability of epigenetic traits. Yet. I do keep an open mind.



posted on Oct, 17 2018 @ 03:51 PM
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a reply to: PhotonEffect

Forgot to address this

The reason I believe that lactase persistence would be world wide by now is that humans aren't sedentary and we haven't been since the first archaic H. Erectus made it's way into the Caucuses (H. Georgicus) who had so,e very archaic features that appear to be, morphologically at least, between H. Habilis and the more modern H. Erectus we find in E. Africa. Populations have been moving across the globe, engaging I'm admixture with nearly every new group encountered and even at 5KA, there are more European genes in the Americas and Australia than there are indigenous. The same European genes do not always express lactase persistence yet the genes that allow for lactase persistence are found in almost every single group. If it were epigenetic, you should, and just my opinion, see a higher rate of persistence with the degree of movement and interbreeding between different groups.



posted on Oct, 18 2018 @ 02:58 PM
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originally posted by: Noinden
I will add, that at no point have I mentioned anything about the cause of the mutations. I pointed out that they are MUTATIONS, not epigenetic alterations.

In your expert opinion, how does the same phenotype emerge from different genetic alterations across different genetic backgrounds? Seems the SNP's that are known to have occurred did so within the same regulatory region for the LCT gene. Almost like a mutational hotspot. But even still, LP has emerged in some cases even without these alterations. The genotype alone doesn't explain the phenotype. Something else is missing.



posted on Oct, 18 2018 @ 03:40 PM
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Appreciate the thoughtful reply.


originally posted by: peter vlar
The issue I disagree with is that Cooperton et al feel that epigenetics alone are the primary force behind adaptive traits.

I disagree with coop on the aspect of evolution occurring. It most certainly does. What I have problems with is the idea that mutations must be responsible for all the adaptive responses we see in nature. If anyone bothers to look more closely, they will find that, while mutations may certainly be associated with certain adaptive traits or phenotypes, they aren't necessarily the cause of that phenotype. I think it's becoming more widely realized that genotypes are less than stellar at predicting phenotypes. They don't map linearly. I will get chastised for this now I'm sure, but I have no doubt that epigenomics will shed whole new light on what's going on. Some of the discoveries emerging out of the research in the field are really fascinating, and to me is casting a long light ahead to give us a glimpse of what we are going to learn.

Have you not encountered any gaps in understanding related to the genomic data you've come to study?


originally posted by: peter vlar
While epigenetics may not be on a specific list of accepted roles in biological evolution, you have to be honest in that it's a very new field and new claims require extraordinary evidence. Beyond minor changes in gene expression and regulation, I haven't seen that burden of proof to be met as yet. I as always, am open to new data and evidence.

It's not that new actually. The problem is researchers haven't been asking the right questions until recently. Most likely due to the surprises revealed from the sequencing of genomes. In general, what they found was, things weren't adding up. So there had to be something else. Now I'm sure you know research follows the funding. So my guess is not enough funding has come into the field to be able to dedicate resources to elucidating the evolutionary role of epigenetics. Most studies to date are to better understand its role with disease. Any findings related to the impact on evolution are likely a byproduct of those studies.


originally posted by: peter vlar
Cooperton comes across as though he has found fatal flaws in how evolution occurs simply because of epigenetics and that isn't the case. Mutations, SNP's and genetic drift are far more important to the evolution of biological organisms, based on the evidence we currently have to work with.


Epigenetic inheritance has already been shown to occur. To what extent this occurs on a grander scale remains to be seen but I think it's going to surprise a lot of people. That memories or experiences can be passed transgenerationally carries some pretty interesting implications. The regulatory factors that are modulated by epigenetic mechanisms I think are very widespread. Researchers in the field are just now realizing this. What it means is that changes to genotype aren't as correlative to phenotype. In my opinion, the epigenetic alternative defines a pathway by which the environment can dictate either how the genotype responds (by inducing mutations), or control a phenotype without waiting for the genotype to change (plasticity).

I'm rambling now...
edit on 18-10-2018 by PhotonEffect because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 18 2018 @ 03:57 PM
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originally posted by: peter vlar
a reply to: PhotonEffect

Forgot to address this

The same European genes do not always express lactase persistence yet the genes that allow for lactase persistence are found in almost every single group. If it were epigenetic, you should, and just my opinion, see a higher rate of persistence with the degree of movement and interbreeding between different groups.

I tend to associate LP phenotype with the use of dairy, so essentially it should be more prevalent in pastoral populations, which it is. The fact that it isn't widespread globally tells me that these mutations aren't happening randomly in non pastoral populations (or maybe they are but we haven't looked). If these SNPs were showing up randomly across the globe then I think this shoots down the epigenetic association. But they aren't. This adaptation is specific to the use of dairy.



posted on Oct, 18 2018 @ 04:33 PM
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I'm going to interject and say one thing, and it is (in my mind, at least) one the most sound (and quite possibly the only) arguments against evolution..... and then I'll be on my way - literally, I have an hour and a half commute home to house full of crazy children.

Evolution generally involves small *improvements* over time to the organism. A lot of big systems we have, as well as perceived evolutionary improvements.... such as lungs.

Now, let's take the lungs. They didn't develop overnight; creatures would've had to been born with meaningless sacks of cells, which turned into non-functioning internal organs, before turning into.... etc. Same with limbs, fingers, toes, feet, fins, eyes, etc. At some point, these "evolutionary advantages" would've been useless blobs of whatever, making said organisms' existence more difficult for generations before finally evolving into the fully formed and functioning body parts they are today - thus completely undermining and tearing apart one of the basic foundation pieces of evolution.

And on that note, everyone have a great day



posted on Oct, 18 2018 @ 05:53 PM
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a reply to: dothedew

I'm afraid you're quite wrong on how organisms develop. Nature is quite remarkable in its efficiency. We don't develop useless blobs of cells unless they're cancerous or otherwise diseased. You might consider acquiring a freshman level biology book where this is all explained.

From Wikipedia:




Cell-count distribution featuring cellular differentiation for three types of cells (progenitor [displaystyle z] z, osteoblast [displaystyle y] y, and chondrocyte [displaystyle x] x) exposed to pro-osteoblast stimulus.[1] In developmental biology, cellular differentiation is the process where a cell changes from one cell type to another.[2][3] Most commonly the cell changes to a more specialized type. Differentiation occurs numerous times during the development of a multicellular organism as it changes from a simple zygote to a complex system of tissues and cell types. Differentiation continues in adulthood as adult stem cells divide and create fully differentiated daughter cells during tissue repair and during normal cell turnover. Some differentiation occurs in response to antigen exposure. Differentiation dramatically changes a cell's size, shape, membrane potential, metabolic activity, and responsiveness to signals. These changes are largely due to highly controlled modifications in gene expression and are the study of epigenetics. With a few exceptions, cellular differentiation almost never involves a change in the DNA sequence itself. Thus, different cells can have very different physical characteristics despite having the same genome.





Each specialized cell type in an organism expresses a subset of all the genes that constitute the genome of that species. Each cell type is defined by its particular pattern of regulated gene expression. Cell differentiation is thus a transition of a cell from one cell type to another and it involves a switch from one pattern of gene expression to another. Cellular differentiation during development can be understood as the result of a gene regulatory network. A regulatory gene and its cis-regulatory modules are nodes in a gene regulatory network; they receive input and create output elsewhere in the network.[19] The systems biology approach to developmental biology emphasizes the importance of investigating how developmental mechanisms interact to produce predictable patterns (morphogenesis). (However, an alternative view has been proposed recently. Based on stochastic gene expression, cellular differentiation is the result of a Darwinian selective process occurring among cells. In this frame, protein and gene networks are the result of cellular processes and not their cause. See: Cellular Darwinism)


en.wikipedia.org...



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