The entire evolution of the microbial world and the virus world, and the interaction between microbes and viruses and other life forms have been left out of the Modern Synthesis…
[T]he entire ideology of personalized medicine should be taken with many grains of salt.
My comment: Personalized medicine links the conserved molecular mechanisms of biologically-based cause and effect from nutrient-dependent RNA-mediated gene duplication to RNA-mediated amino acid substitutions, which differentiate all cell types in all individuals of all genera. Fixation of the amino acid substitutions in the organized genomes of all genomes occurs in the context of their physiology of reproduction.
The idea that any aspect of this biophysically constrained chemistry of nutrient-dependent protein folding, which links atoms to ecosystems, should be taken with “…many grains of salt” is an idea commonly shared by those who do not understand how cell type differentiation occurs.
Koonin cannot yet be placed into the same category as other theorists. He clearly identified the problem with neo-Darwinian theories about a last universal common ancestor. See:
We cannot conceive of a global external factor that could cause, during this time, parallel evolution of amino acid compositions of proteins in 15 diverse taxa that represent all three domains of life and span a wide range of lifestyles and environments. Thus, currently, the most plausible hypothesis is that we are observing a universal, intrinsic trend that emerged before the last universal common ancestor of all extant organisms.
My comment: Claiming anything about “…a universal, intrinsic trend that emerged…” closely parallels the claims of creationists whose claims are supported by experimental evidence that links viruses to RNA-mediated cell type differentiation.
First, the de novo creation of amino acids must occur. Then viruses can perturb the creation of different cell types in different species by preventing proper RNA-mediated protein folding. The viruses can then be linked to all pathology at the same time that RNA-mediated amino acid substitutions are linked to healthy longevity.
See also: The Darwin Code by Greg Bear
In fact, even in 1983, when I was preparing my novel Blood Music, I asked myself–what do viruses do ¬for us? Why do we allow them to infect us? I suspected they were part of a scheme involving computational DNA, but could not fit them in…not just then.
My comment: In his 1985 novel, Greg Bear linked RNA-mediated amino acid substitutions to learning and memory. He also linked learning and memort to cell type differentiation via RNA-mediated gene duplication.
See: RNA-mediated gene duplication: the rat preproinsulin I gene is a functional retroposon
At the same time, and since then, others began to learn that anything told to them by neo-Darwinian theorists had not been supported by experimental evidence. There is still no experimental evidence of biologically-based cause and effect that links mutations from natural selection to the evolution of different cell types in individuals of different species.
Although Ho has not let up in her criticism of the Modern Synthesis, as our conversation reveals, she says evolutionary science has now “moved on to such an extent” that she and Peter Saunders don’t really care anymore about “trying to convince the neo-Darwinists.”
Taken together, compare the experimental evidence for virus-driven ecological adaptation, which appears to occur via the anti-entropic epigenetic effects of nutrient-dependent microRNAs, and ask why any neo-Darwinian evolutionary theorist ever claimed anything without attempting to support the claim with experimental evidence that links biologically-based cause and effect. Instead, see this attempt to explain evolution in the ridiculous context of theory.