Plant DNA Challenging Preconceptions About Evolution, Even Human Evolution

page: 1
21
<<   2 >>

log in

join
+1 more 
posted on Jan, 5 2014 @ 09:51 PM
link   
Plants came first in genetics research - and still do, apparently. Researchers have discovered some “mind-blowing” phenomena in plant genomics over the past two years. And it seems the bizarre behavior of plant genomes often applies to animals too.


Weird and wonderful, plant DNA is challenging preconceptions about the evolution of life, including our own species.

What do cells, genes, mutations, transposons, RNA silencing, and DNA recombination have in common? All were discovered first in plants.

…Today, with the advent of high-throughput sequencing, that legacy of firsts in the plant field is extending to genomics research. In the tens of millions of nucleic acids of familiar and not-so-familiar plant species—from fluffy, domesticated cotton to aquatic, carnivorous bladderwort—plant biologists are uncovering surprising principles about how genomes are organized and how they evolved.

In the last two years, researchers have stumbled upon some “mind-blowing” phenomena in plant genomics, including genomes so strange that “we didn’t think [they] could be like that,” says R. Keith Slotkin, a geneticist at Ohio State University. Examples include the peaceful coexistence of two different genomes in a single nucleus and the willy-nilly way plants swap genes among species. And just as with Hooke’s, Brown’s, and Mendel’s fundamental discoveries in plant biology, the bizarre behavior of plant genomes often applies to animals as well.

…..Imagine borrowing a few genes from a lion to improve your night vision, sneaking a couple from a salmon to breathe underwater, and swiping one or two more from a salamander in case you need to grow back a finger.

Yes, it sounds crazy, because animals don’t normally swap genes. But plants do, even between species as different as humans and salamanders. Plants that intermingle physically can trade DNA—typically mitochondrial DNA—but not always. This gene swapping can happen when a parasitic plant latches onto a host, like a vine wrapping around the trunk of an oak tree, or when two plants grow close together and graft onto each other, says Indiana University’s Jeffrey Palmer, who studies horizontal gene transfer in plants.

…“Plants are a model system for comparative genomics and other processes,” says Palmer. In polyploidy, transposable elements, and rates of mutation, plants lead the way. And there’s plenty more exciting work coming down the pipeline from plants, he adds, but you have to keep your eye out for it. “Furry animals get on the covers of Science and Nature a lot more than plants do,” he says with a laugh. 


We are all one. We really are.




posted on Jan, 5 2014 @ 10:01 PM
link   
I think plants are highly evolved organisms. We take them for granted as being primitive but I bet their evolution is superior to animals. Just because they can't travel around does not mean they are not genetically advanced. If someone were to come and chew our arms and legs off, could we make new ones?

S&F good thread.



posted on Jan, 5 2014 @ 10:06 PM
link   
reply to post by rickymouse
 


Thanks rickymouse. ...Seems to me some deep sea plants DO move around, similarly some ocean animals are stationary. My memory is vague though - do you have any info on this one?



posted on Jan, 5 2014 @ 10:36 PM
link   
So if an alien ever asks you for a piggy back ride, you'll know what he really wants.



Just say "NO" to alien piggy back rides.


OP, thanks for sharing. It just goes to show that our DNA is the real driving force behind evolution and it matters not which species evolves. There is a hidden agenda behind whatever drives evolution and if one species piggy backs on another in order to get there then so be it as long as the process keeps moving forward. Makes me wonder if there is some sort of hidden goal that DNA is programmed to achieve here. Interesting food for thought.



posted on Jan, 5 2014 @ 11:28 PM
link   
Even while it's an awesome article, and the possibilities are endless...

I feel a little frightened by the people that study the genetic world of plants usually.
As genetically enhanced plants for food, are already experiences us playing god...

These new possibilities create an even higher risk of our godlike influence, spreading new species to places wile being ignorant of the consequences our actions might cause in the future...

Unless they can tell me the are aware and understand of the effects on the long term .

Great find though s&f


One way to tell if the geranium DNA repair system is faulty would be to compare it to an especially slow mutator, such as the tulip tree. The tulip tree’s mitochondrial genome—which Palmer sequenced because “it happens to be a tree that I love”—turns out to have one of the slowest mutation rates of any known mitochondrial genome.8 It’s essentially a living fossil, says Palmer, who believes that the tree may have an especially good system for repairing DNA damage, and that studying it could help us learn how to prevent deleterious mutations in our own DNA.


THIS IS REALLY MIND BOGGELING !
edit on 1/5/2014 by Sinter Klaas because: Edit to show enthusiasm.



posted on Jan, 5 2014 @ 11:31 PM
link   
reply to post by soficrow
 


[snip]

Grafting also allows you to copy a branch of one plant onto another plant like cutting off a white guy's arm and putting it on a black guy and it will grow grow grow, pretty neat stuff
edit on 9-1-2014 by elevatedone because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 6 2014 @ 12:25 AM
link   
reply to post by MOSTwanted
 


Great minds think alike!While reading the op I instantly thought of what your comment said and then what do you know,a few comments in and you had written it!
I know for a fact that grafting two different strains together definitely works,amazing things plants,undervalued and over looked by many.
edit on 6/1/2014 by glen200376 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 6 2014 @ 03:04 AM
link   

An Inaccurate, Sensationalised and Inappropriate Thread Title


Nothing in the linked article poses a challenge to the theory of evolution (even human evolution) by natural selection. It is simply a review of unusual discoveries in plant genomics. None of these discoveries is likely to rewrite, far less discredit, any essential element of the theory. They may help throw light on various aspects of human evolution, such as the mitochondrial 'symbiosis', but they certainly aren't challenging the paradigm.

[snipped]

edit on 6/1/14 by Astyanax because: the agenda is well known.
edit on Thu Jan 9 2014 by DontTreadOnMe because: We expect civility and decorum within all topics.



posted on Jan, 6 2014 @ 03:47 AM
link   
Interesting news.

Ocean Plankton is made up of both animal and plant organisms, and some plants do move.

Many people forget that Plant life has evolved too.

Trees, like mammals, are relatively modern.

Ancient plants are the ferns and moss etc.

There are even many types of trees, Conifers, Deciduous (drop leaves in winter), Palms, Eucalyptus (Gum trees which dont shed their leaves) trees.

Some plants even need wildfires to germinate.

The Earth is an amazing place.



posted on Jan, 6 2014 @ 09:38 AM
link   
reply to post by Astyanax
 


The title of the thread gives a completely false representation of the contents of the article. I hope this was due to ignorance, and not a hoaxer's attempt to discredit the theory of evolution.


Good grief. Please, please, PLEASE read - the OP, the source article and my own past threads. There is nothing anywhere there that "attempts to discredit the theory of evolution." I am totally into understanding evolution, and especially epigenetics as an evolutionary mechanism. But yes, I DID shorten the title. Here is is, in full: Genomes Gone Wild: Weird and wonderful, plant DNA is challenging preconceptions about the evolution of life, including our own species.

[snip]










edit on 9-1-2014 by elevatedone because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 6 2014 @ 09:45 AM
link   
reply to post by MOSTwanted
 


You might be interested in polyploidy in general. In comparison, grafting is kinda boring.



posted on Jan, 6 2014 @ 02:46 PM
link   
reply to post by Astyanax
 


Nothing like a bias to get in the way of appreciating
scientific research, and an outstanding ATS member.


There are dozens, if not hundreds of religious threads here on the forum
where your comment might have been better served, just sayin.

Sofi,

Thanks for the thread!
We certainly do need to gain a better knowledge of horizontal gene transfer,
this is good stuff. S&F



posted on Jan, 6 2014 @ 03:02 PM
link   
reply to post by burntheships
 


Thanks burntheships. I joked about horizontal gene transfer in one of my podcasts way back when (something about the elite exchanging genes with their servants, oh horrors) but seriously, I suspect the mechanisms exist not just to respond to environmental change but also, for all life to (eventually) share such genetic information. Which would imply we should very gawdammed careful about what we put into our world and bodies.



posted on Jan, 6 2014 @ 03:07 PM
link   
reply to post by soficrow
 


Exactly!

While we are stuck with the big chemical companies meddling in the research
that is directly linked to exposing the dangers of GMO organisms,
the research you have linked to will go a long ways to back up
any unbiased studies that researchers manage to get to the forefront.



posted on Jan, 6 2014 @ 03:12 PM
link   
Great thread Sofi!

My favorite flower is the "Snapdragon", for me it's a magical because: You can buy them in all different colors, plant, and then they start blending colors together (at face value they also look like dragon heads). They come back every year in the weirdest places in hughes of color that you never planted. It's simply amazing.

The more we as humans think we know, the more we realize that this earth is a lot stranger and thus the less we know.

There's been a lot of major strides lately in genetics, it will be interesting to see how all this information plays out in the future and what implications this will play with our own DNA.

SnF~



posted on Jan, 6 2014 @ 03:15 PM
link   
reply to post by rickymouse
 


Just had to look it up - found a great page on sessile animals, with cool pics (check out those sea squirts!). Can't find plants that move around and change their location (yet) but some plants DO move - scroll to the bottome of this page Weird Plants.


The Amazing Lives of Stationary Animals

As many of you know all too well, it can take effort to get up and move. You get up and move to use the bathroom, you get up and move to eat...sometimes you even have to get up and move to reproduce! While most of the animal kingdom shares your pain, there are many in the evolutionary race who have narrowly evaded the hornet's nest that is mobility. These creatures, known to science as "sessile," spend their entire adult lives firmly attached to a single place.

It should come as no surprise that all of our candidates for the most exciting sessile animals happen to dwell in the ocean, where even the most slothful creature can open its mouth and receive a steady stream of food on the water's current. On dry land, such behavior is mirrored only by the females of certain insects, which live attached to plant life under a waxy shell.



Duh - plankton are plants, not rooted. I knew that.


There are two general types of plants found in the ocean, those having roots that are attached to the ocean bottom and those not having roots which simply drift about with the water.

...The most abundant plants in the ocean are known as phytoplankton. These are usually single-celled, minute floating plants that drift throughout the surface waters of the ocean.







edit on 6/1/14 by soficrow because: format
edit on 6/1/14 by soficrow because: add plankton bit



posted on Jan, 6 2014 @ 08:02 PM
link   
reply to post by sulaw
 


Thanks sulaw. And yeah, gotta love those snapdragons!


There's been a lot of major strides lately in genetics, it will be interesting to see how all this information plays out in the future and what implications this will play with our own DNA.


True but I keep harping on epigenetics - and the point that we can inherit stuff that hasn't altered our DNA in any way. It's important because it means we have a chance to clean up our act and our world and change things - inheritance is NOT permanent.



posted on Jan, 6 2014 @ 08:06 PM
link   
reply to post by Sinter Klaas
 


...I feel a little frightened by the people that study the genetic world of plants usually.
As genetically enhanced plants for food, are already experiences us playing god...

These new possibilities create an even higher risk of our godlike influence, spreading new species to places wile being ignorant of the consequences our actions might cause in the future...

Unless they can tell me the are aware and understand of the effects on the long term .


NOBODY working in GE or GM is looking further than the bottom line for the next quarter. And while they're playing God, and putting plant genes in animals and vice versa, they keep insisting such hybridization can't really happen. Duh.



posted on Jan, 6 2014 @ 08:14 PM
link   
reply to post by soficrow
 


Thanks for the thread. It is lovely to see the different ways in which life communicates with itself. I think we are only beginning to scratch the surface of the complexity of life on our home..



posted on Jan, 8 2014 @ 07:14 AM
link   
reply to post by soficrow
 



Good grief. Please, please, PLEASE read - the OP, the source article and my own past threads. There is nothing anywhere there that "attempts to discredit the theory of evolution." I am totally into understanding evolution, and especially epigenetics as an evolutionary mechanism. But yes, I DID shorten the title. Here is is, in full: Genomes Gone Wild: Weird and wonderful, plant DNA is challenging preconceptions about the evolution of life, including our own species. Feel free to read the material and post any relevant comment(s) that might pop into your little head.

I read the material before I made my earlier post.

The title of the article is 'Genomes Gone Wild'. You have quoted the subtitle, doubtless because it better serves your purpose.





new topics
top topics
 
21
<<   2 >>

log in

join