Re: [asa] lactose tolerance mutation

From: Randy Isaac <>
Date: Wed Dec 13 2006 - 08:20:07 EST

It's about as close to a quote as I can get. It certainly surprised me when
I heard it.
I expected him to throw in a loophole like "well, maybe on very rare
occasions..." but he didn't.

Could you explain more what you mean by "neutrality does drive evolution"?

----- Original Message -----
From: "PvM" <>
To: "Randy Isaac" <>
Cc: <>
Sent: Tuesday, December 12, 2006 11:02 PM
Subject: Re: [asa] lactose tolerance mutation

> Man, if Paul really said this then he seems even more confused about
> evolutionary science than I had imagined.
> First of all, there exist good examples of beneficial mutations,
> second of all, neutrality does drive evolution.
> Are you sure he said this as this seems to be quite a vacuous and
> erroneous statement.
> On 12/12/06, Randy Isaac <> wrote:
>> This afternoon I listened to the radio program "The Bible Answer Man"
>> sponsored by the Christian Research Institute. Paul Nelson was the guest.
>> He
>> is very impressive in his style of communication. It was generally the
>> standard ID fare but I was surprised at his answer to one of the call-in
>> questions. The caller asked whether there were any beneficial mutations
>> or
>> if they were all harmful. Paul essentially said none was beneficial and
>> mutations may be neutral at best but neutrality doesn't drive evolution.
>> I wish I could have jumped in and asked about the article that Jack Haas
>> posted on his blog on Dec. 11 (I presume you all regularly check Jack's
>> blog
>> at ) on lactose
>> tolerance. If I understand it correctly this is not only an example of a
>> positive mutation (assuming it is positive to be tolerant of lactose) but
>> also one of convergent evolution. I'm not an expert in this field so I
>> have
>> some questions for those of you who are. Are they implying that the same
>> mutation occurred in different populations to achieve convergence in
>> lactose
>> tolerance? Or are these different mutations? If so, what are the
>> characteristics of the mutations causing this change? Is it silencing a
>> specific protein? Activating a silent one? In general, I would like to
>> know
>> what you think is the significance of this finding.
>> Randy
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Received on Wed Dec 13 08:20:43 2006

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