“Surprising” clocks found in bacteria

Rolex watch

Photo credit: Adam Bignell via Unsplash.

Science news from England tells of the “surprising complexity of bacterial circadian clocks”. The surprised scientists come from Norwich’s John Innes Centre, an “independent, international center of excellence in plant science, genetics and microbiology.” Why would researchers in the UK and mainland Europe, primarily Darwinists, react with surprise? This was from consideration of how evolution could give precise timelines to the simplest, most primitive forms of life.

Antonie van Leeuwenhoek, the first person to observe bacteria with an ordinary microscope in 1683, was amazed to see such small life forms that were capable of movement and reproduction. In 1805 William Paley would have been surprised to discover that a clock on the Heath had just come out of the ground. But today’s evolutionists take complexity for granted. Every tissue, organ, and system in biology can be accounted for by the almighty hand of natural selection. There should be a “ho-hum” reaction.

Bacteria make up more than 10% of all living things Until recently we didn’t realize that, like humans, soil bacteria also have internal clocks Which synchronize their activities with the 24-hour cycle of day and night on Earth.

New research shows How complex and sophisticated are these bacterial circadian clocksClearing the way for an exciting new phase of study….

An international collaboration of Ludwig Maximilian University Munich (LMU Munich), the John Innes Centre, the Technical University of Denmark and Leiden University made the discovery by examining gene expression as evidence of clock activity in widespread soil bacteria. Bacillus subtilis, [Emphasis added.]

“Wide” watch activity

The authors published a paper about science advancementS, declaring that the bacterial clock “evokes the properties of complex, multicellular circadian systems.” Lead author Francesca Sartore said clock activity in this tiny microbe is “extensive.” It controls many genes and behaviors.

Professor Antony Dodd, of the John Innes Centre, said:It is surprising that a unicellular organism with such a small genome has a circadian clock that has some of the properties that evolve clocks in more complex organisms.,

Furthermore, researchers believe that clocks are widespread in bacteria. What happened to the idea of ​​evolution from simple to complex by successive stages? Would a “blind watchmaker” start with a Rolex?

Professor Akos T. Kovacs of Leiden University and the Technical University of Denmark said… “It is The surprising circadian clock In Bacillus subtilis – with a bacteria only four thousand genes – It has a complex circadian system Reminiscent of circadian clocks in complex organisms such as flies, mammals, and plants,

“Only four thousand genes” sounds strange. Try counting out loud to four thousand; This would take over two hours at two seconds per integer. As you count, think of a molecular machine, regulatory element, or the purposeful role represented by each of those digits. Furthermore, each bacterial gene is composed of an average of 900 base pairs. That’s a lot of functional information packed into an organism that’s one micron in diameter. Still, evolutionary biologists did not expect to find circadian clocks in bacteria that match the functional sophistication of flies, mammals, and plants.

Is Jean a blind watchmaker?

Marine biologist Audrey Matt of the University of Vienna says that genes are “great clockmakers”. I am writing Conversation, she gives a ho-hum response to the existence of timekeepers in living organisms. “The rotation of the Earth, Moon, and Sun produce environmental cycles that have driven the selection of biological clocks.” Under this logic, pressure waves favor ear selection. Photons favor eye selection. The rotation and orbits of the planets optimize the selection of clocks. The environment may support things as best they can, but complex sensors to detect and use them do not logically follow.

The circadian clock mechanism was first discovered in the 1970s in the fruit fly, also known as Drosophila. It is based on a feedback loop in the transcription and translation of multiple genes – gene A promotes the expression of gene B, which in turn inhibits the expression of gene A – creating an oscillation. During the day, light induces the reduction of specific factors of the loop through photoreceptors called cryptochromes. Interestingly, the key factors of the mechanism essentially involve only a few named genes. duration, timeless, Watch And cycle, Although Fine-tuning and regulation is of the clock Based on a complex molecular and neuronal network that ensures its timeliness and accuracy.

According to Matt, physical forces not only motivate the emergence of devices to realize them; They also tune them and maintain them. They also adjust their responses to changing weather. How does Darwinism explain this? This is not:

The circadian clock is not the only clock Mechanisms that exist in nature. There are many biological processes seasonal, such as the migration of many birds and insects, the reproduction and hibernation of many animal species, and the flowering of plants. This season is generally determined by a number of factors, including in the case of many species a factor known as the circadian clock. The mechanism of this clock has not yet been determined.

Can clocks be Darwinized?

in paper science advancement No one makes any claims to Darwinism either. The authors put evolutionary explanations in the future tense:

Exploring the mechanisms by which this memory of entrainment conditions arises during the development of the circadian system in different systems, will inform on convergent and divergent evolutionary processes,

That’s all they say about development. However, don’t hold your breath for an answer. Faced with complex functional timekeeping in the most primitive organisms, evolutionary biologists have left the job of telling the story for them.

Circadian clocks are pervasive throughout nature, yet only recently has this adaptive regulatory program been described in non-photosynthetic bacteria., Here, we describe an inherent complexity In Bacillus subtilis circadian clock…. We report that circadian rhythms occur in wild isolates of this prokaryote, thus establishing them as a general property of this species, and that Its circadian system responds to the environment in a complex manner that is analogous to multicellular eukaryotic circadian systems.

The complex capabilities of bacterial species include Entry, or following the signals. Like catching a train, entertainment requires understanding environmental cues, called zeitgebers, and deliberately boarding a ship to go somewhere. It also visualizes the memory of signals.

Early expectations and surprising findings

One doesn’t always see “surprised” in a strange scientific paper, but in this paper the word comes up clearly:

Entrainment establishes a stable phase relationship between external (environmental) and internal (circadian) time. Circadian systems use zeitgebers for entrainment, Leading to a set of remarkable events. We were surprised to find that a prokaryote challenged with the chronological protocol displays a variety of highly complex entry properties…. The presence of side effects (see Table S1) suggests that related information The Zeitgeber exposure is stored like a memory.

They did not expect this. “It would be naive to assume that a prokaryotic circadian clock shares these properties with multicellular organisms,” they initially thought, but observations proved otherwise. Using red and blue lights as zeitgebers, and observing reactions with fluorescent signals, they were able to trap the microbes and alter their behavior by modulating the free-running period (FRP) of the light. The results showed that “this organism shares many circadian characteristics occurring in eukaryotic organisms, some of which have yet to be documented in established clock models in cyanobacteria or fungi.”

Our comments also underline this A combination of zeitgebers is used By B. subtiliswhich is Analogous to the situation for fungal, mammalian and plant cells., the circadian clock is “Reading” the local environment and, for many systems, this means using not just one but multiple signals. We suggest that by using both blue and red light and temperature as zeitgebers, B. subtilis Clock-regulated processes can occur precisely in a large range of conditions.

It is truly amazing to find this to be true for the tiny microbes that live in the soil. How do they do it without eyes? “Light-sensing mechanism is used B. subtilis Remain anonymous for the purpose of entry. Perhaps microorganisms respond to energy levels of different wavelengths of light entering the soil. All that is included in the bacterial clock resulted in the second use of the word “remarkable” in the conclusion:

in conclusion, We find it remarkable that a relatively simple prokaryoteWhich lacks a clear hierarchy of organization of multicellular organisms, Uncovers the properties of complex circadian systems.

Design enthusiasts will also definitely find it noteworthy. But surprise? For those committed to explaining biology by unknown physical causes, surprise is understandable. Those who recognize the hand behind the brilliant engineering that surrounds us in life are happy but not surprised.

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