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Bacteria make major evolutionary shift in the lab

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posted on Jun, 11 2008 @ 06:08 PM
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Bacteria make major evolutionary shift in the lab


www.newscientist.com

A major evolutionary innovation has unfurled right in front of researchers' eyes. It's the first time evolution has been caught in the act of making such a rare and complex new trait.

And because the species in question is a bacterium, scientists have been able to replay history to show how this evolutionary novelty grew from the accumulation of unpredictable, chance events.

(visit the link for the full news article)




posted on Jun, 11 2008 @ 06:08 PM
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Does this really mean much to anyone?

Sounds a tab bit stupid to me to consider this as evidence

www.newscientist.com
(visit the link for the full news article)



posted on Jun, 11 2008 @ 07:00 PM
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Originally posted by ModernAcademia


Does this really mean much to anyone?

Sounds a tab bit stupid to me to consider this as evidence

www.newscientist.com
(visit the link for the full news article)


Wow! Why does this sound a "but stupid" to you? Your inability to comprehend perhaps?


This is AMAZING! Starred and Flagged!

Finally we can duplicate the evolutionary process over and over and over again.

Nice....



posted on Jun, 11 2008 @ 07:26 PM
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So, it's still bacteria, right? Nothing new to see here, move along. People have understood for 10,000 years you can breed certain traits in animals so they become more dominant.

Not one example yet of a bacterium turning into a multi-celled creature. Or a horse, dog, or cat turning into anything other than a horse, dog, or cat.



posted on Jun, 11 2008 @ 07:32 PM
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That is kind of an interesting read. What I thought was the best part was that he has been keeping track of twelve separate groups of e coil for forty four thousand generations. This new trait brought about by several chance mutations happened in just one. Since he has samples of every five hundred generations he has been able to replay the chance evolution. It sounds like this is very well documented. As it says in the source article, it is kind of a poke at the creationshist.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 01:37 AM
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Originally posted by sir_chancealot
So, it's still bacteria, right? Nothing new to see here, move along. People have understood for 10,000 years you can breed certain traits in animals so they become more dominant.

Not one example yet of a bacterium turning into a multi-celled creature. Or a horse, dog, or cat turning into anything other than a horse, dog, or cat.


This is pretty much the same thing. The ability to process citrate was such a big thing, that the inability of e coli to process citrate is a key attribute of it's species.


This is a HUGE thing.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 01:50 AM
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Originally posted by sir_chancealot
So, it's still bacteria, right? Nothing new to see here, move along. People have understood for 10,000 years you can breed certain traits in animals so they become more dominant.

Not one example yet of a bacterium turning into a multi-celled creature. Or a horse, dog, or cat turning into anything other than a horse, dog, or cat.


You did not read the article thoroughly.

"Indeed, the inability to use citrate is one of the traits by which bacteriologists distinguish E. coli from other species. The citrate-using mutants increased in population size and diversity."

So yes, this is akin to breeding a dog with wings.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 06:11 AM
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Something has kind of been bugging me.
Could this new strain of E Coli, with the ability to use citrate. Might it pose a greater threat or be more deadly to humans. Or might it be able to be used as a weapon?



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 06:19 AM
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Originally posted by RedGolem
Or might it be able to be used as a weapon?


Naturally.

In reality, anything can be used as a weapon though, so i wouldn't worry too much about it.

Unless of course you can think of something that is truly harmless.

As for the debate over the possibilities of recreating the required environment for evolution in a lab, that might be going a bit far.

But, at a very basic level, this is like watching humans evolve from Apes, so it's hardily surprising how many people are fascinated by this.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 06:24 AM
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reply to post by Anti-Tyrant
 


But what was bugging me about the possible weaponisation was that e coli dies very quickly out side its host, so it was never a good canadite for a weapon. This new mutation is different, so I wondering it it could pose a greater threat as a weapon.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 06:32 AM
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And i told you, it is only natural that a more evolved strain will be more effective at breaking down and spreading between host bodies.

I was just making a point that pretty much anything on this planet that you can hold in your hand can be used as a weapon, and unfortunately that includes petri dishes with mutant strains of bacteria in it.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 06:41 AM
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it's certainly interesting, i won't say it pokes anyone in the eye until everything is understood and further studies conclude what exactly the mechanism developed at 20k was, but i see this as a huge breakthrough if it does pan out as legitimate.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 06:45 AM
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Originally posted by Quazga

Wow! Why does this sound a "but stupid" to you? Your inability to comprehend perhaps?

Finally we can duplicate the evolutionary process over and over and over again.


No you are not duplicating anything.

Replay evolution?
Does someone own a time machine, because that's the only way to replay it, otherwise it's just 'we will replay evolution within the parameters of what we THINK happened'


apc

posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 06:55 AM
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Nice. True speciation.



In the meantime, the experiment stands as proof that evolution does not always lead to the best possible outcome.

Got that right... just look at humans.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 07:00 AM
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Originally posted by Anti-Tyrant
And i told you, it is only natural that a more evolved strain will be more effective at breaking down and spreading between host bodies.



OK, so what you are saying is that because this is a new mutation of e coli that it will be able to live out side the host, and spread easier for no other reason then it is a new mutation?

Point being no one has said how well this new mutation can survive out side the host or how easily it can spread.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 07:03 AM
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Originally posted by ModernAcademia


Replay evolution?
Does someone own a time machine, because that's the only way to replay it, otherwise it's just 'we will replay evolution within the parameters of what we THINK happened'



No in this experiment he did replay evolution. Read the source article. He kept samples of e coli every five hundred generations. So he went back and replayed the series of mutations that caused this new evolution to come into being.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 07:11 AM
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Correct me if i'm wrong but isnt E. coli found in the rectum?

EDIT: Maybe i should just look it up?

[edit on 12/6/08 by Critical]


apc

posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 07:27 AM
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Yes E. coli is a fecal coliform and the typical cause of food poisoning when fecal matter, usually in beef, is consumed. I wouldn't worry too much about this being weaponized as with normal E. coli proper cooking and handling should have no problem killing it. It shouldn't have any better ability to survive in drinking water... maybe orange juice, but pasteurizing should kill it there also.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 07:31 AM
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reply to post by apc
 


Yikes I drink a lot of orange juice!


Thanks for the information apc.

Always good to hear from some one who knows the topic.



posted on Jun, 12 2008 @ 11:51 AM
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Originally posted by RedGolem


Point being no one has said how well this new mutation can survive out side the host or how easily it can spread.


Ah, but it has mutated, and the only foreseable reason why it would do that is so it can survive longer outside of the warmth and moisture provided by a host body.

Which ultimately, i agree, means that potentially we are going to be the planners of our own demise, if things like that are evolving because we've kept them in bacteria cultures for tens of thousands of generations - imagine a bio-weapon that just doesn't die unless direct action is applied.

If that kind of problem became pandemic, i do believe that we'd have a helluva time hunting down every single last trace of the stuff.



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