mutationscan you name a mutation that adds new gross anatomy....aka organs or parts of organs, eyes, ears...anything really.  duplications and rearrangements of existing body parts do not count....

mutations

can you name a mutation that adds new gross anatomy....aka organs or parts of organs, eyes, ears...anything really.  duplications and rearrangements of existing body parts do not count. The theory of evolution says animals desscended from a bacteria-like common ancestor via selected mutations....therefore, I'm looking for the addition of new, novel, anatomical features via mutation.

thank you

Asked on by happyface22

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litteacher8's profile pic

litteacher8 | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

I think a good example of this is tails.  Theoretically, animals developed tails from stubs.  Animals with longer stubs might have been more effective and would live longer, so they would mate with other animals with long stubs and eventually they would all have long stubs.

wannam's profile pic

wannam | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted on

I agree that evolution works gradually.  You wouldn't see a sudden change.  There would be a gradual change over thousands of years.  The end result compared with the beginning could seem startling, but humans didn't evolve from micro organisms over night.  Evolution would suggest that these changes happened gradually. 

It may interest you to work in the other direct as well.  Humans now have many organs that are superfluous.  For example, I am living perfectly well without a gallbladder.  Once upon a time, our ancestors needed this organ to survive.  A caveman might not be able to find food for several days.  When he did find a meal, it was likely he would gorge and eat as much of it as he could.  The gallbladder supplied the digestive fortitude to be able to process large quantities of food and store it until the next meal.  Now, most people eat at least three regular meals a day.  There is little need for certain digestive chemicals to be held back or released in large quantities. 

This is true of other organs as well.  Think about the appendix or the tonsils.  We needed them at one point in time but now they really don't serve much purpose.

pohnpei397's profile pic

pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

If I understand you correctly, you're asking for something like an eye popping up by itself out of nowhere.  That's not how evolution works.  It works by rearrangements and small, incremental additions.  That's why it took billions of years to get from the single-cell stuff up to more complex kinds of life.

frizzyperm's profile pic

frizzyperm | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator

Posted on

Thank you for your reply.   So please show me an example of what you just described: a mutation that has been observed to add "small, incremental additions" of anatomy.  As I said before I understand that mutations can duplicate existing structures, change colors of organisms, eliminate structures, cause disease and death, but I have not yet seen or heard of any mutation that gives evidence that they can build organisms, as claimed by the theory of evolution.   Would you agree that if humans evolved from a bacteria-like organism over time that mutations would have to add anatomy?   That's what I'm looking for evidence for.    thank you!

Mutations are usually fatal for the host, but occaisonally a mutation occurs which is good. This new genetic code is then passed on and spread throughout the gene pool. I don't wish to sound callous, but we can see from looking at people with genetic deformities that genetic mutation can be extensive and clearly happen.

In fact, the evolution of organs like an eye is reasonably simple to explain. Eye evolution has taken place several times on different branches of the evolutionary tree. Any type of sight, even just the ability to detect light from dark is so phenomenally useful that natural selection immediately favors it.

Try to understand the combined processes of evolution and natural selection. Mutation doesn't jump from one complex state to another complex state, it makes little changes in random directions and natural selection promotes the positive mutations.

So, an eye starts with a spot of skin which is sensitivity to light, this is biochemically very easy to explain, even plants can do this. From there the steps are easy... here are a few youtube vids which explain how you could evolve an eye. It is theoretically quite 'easy' to evolve an eye with little changes.

A 4 min vid...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=duBW9QabXfw

Or a one hour program from the history channel

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DxJsPsXSBfQ

happyface22's profile pic

happyface22 | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 2) Honors

Posted on

Thank you for your reply.   So please show me an example of what you just described: a mutation that has been observed to add "small, incremental additions" of anatomy.  As I said before I understand that mutations can duplicate existing structures, change colors of organisms, eliminate structures, cause disease and death, but I have not yet seen or heard of any mutation that gives evidence that they can build organisms, as claimed by the theory of evolution.   Would you agree that if humans evolved from a bacteria-like organism over time that mutations would have to add anatomy?   That's what I'm looking for evidence for.    thank you!

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