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Fast Flower Evolution

by Dr. Elizabeth Mitchell on April 16, 2011
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PhysOrg: “New genetic study helps to solve Darwin’s mystery about the ancient evolution of flowering plantsAnalysis of data from the Ancestral Angiosperm Genome Project presumably has solved the mystery of how such a variety of flowering plants could evolve in such a short evolutionary time-span.

The “rapid diversification of flowering plants in the fossil record” was termed an “abominable mystery” by Darwin. Assuming that all flowering plants came from a common ancestor, evolutionists ever since Darwin’s day have puzzled over how the many varieties could evolve so fast. Many plant genomes have duplication of genetic material—a condition called polyploidy—which purportedly provides a mechanism for more developmental options than would be available for cells with only two sets of genetic material as found in most animals. (Polyploidy in humans and animals is normally lethal.)

The study suggests that the occurrence of polyploidy early in the evolutionary process provided the genetic material for future diversification to be distributed to a variety of species for further modification.

Scientific verification requires observable, testable, repeatable events. Extrapolation from present molecular behavior to the distant unobservable past requires assumptions which depend on what the scientist already believes.

Two points need to be made here. First of all, the study claims to have used analysis of plant genomes to show that polyploidy provided a method of diversification 200 million years earlier than previously found. However, just as dating of fossils requires certain unverifiable assumptions, so does dating of genetic events by any sort of “molecular clock.” Evolutionists have trouble seeing how mutations can produce variety so “quickly” and are much happier when a couple of million years can be added to the available time, but neither the old nor the new dates can be verified by operational science. Scientific verification requires observable, testable, repeatable events. Extrapolation from present molecular behavior to the distant unobservable past requires assumptions which depend on what the scientist already believes.

Secondly, polyploidy is genetic duplication. It does not produce new genetic information. It just reshuffles and duplicates current information. No new biological structures or functions are gained by polyploidy or any other mutations. Creationists do not deny the genetic mechanisms for production of new varieties within a kind. God created both animals and plants to reproduce after their kind, and that design allows for the magnificent variety we see in many species of both plants and animals.

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