Time to abandon the 'progenote' idea?

RYBICKI, ED ED at micro.uct.ac.za
Mon Nov 1 01:32:32 EST 1993

> > Hasn't sufficient evidence accumulated to formally reject this
> > hypothesis?  Forterre and colleagues [Biosystems (Netherlands) 
> > p15-3] have argued persuasively that the existence of homologous
> > DNA-polymerase genes with proofreading functions in all 
> Probably what Woese suggested as the progenote, would represent a
> large number of qualitatively different steps of evolution, 
> an RNA genome, later a DNA genome, probably still fragmented and 
> compartmentalized in a primitive cell membrane. Before attacking a 
> interesting and not well-explored idea, I would give it a further 
> I would certainly not consider the publication of forterre et al 
as the
> final blow against this hypothesis.

Seconded!!  I had a "debate" in print recently with a VERY strange 
creationist, who argued that the presence of similar 
metabolic pathways in bacteria and humans was evidence that they had 
been co-created, rather than because they had both evolved from a 
common precursor...so the presence of "homologous" DNA (and RNA) 
polymerases in all modern cellular organisms is evidence that they 
all descend from a common DNA-containing precursor - the only one to 
successfully make the transition from and RNA to a DNA genome, 
perhaps?  Of course, some viruses stayed as RNA, but most 
evolutionists forget about them...!

 | Ed Rybicki, PhD             |                                      |
 | (ed at micro.uct.ac.za)        |      "Lord, won't you buy me         |
 | Dept Microbiology           |          A Mer-ce-des Benz           |
 | University of Cape Town     |     My friends all have Porsches     |
 |                             |          I must make amends..."      |                      |
 | Private Bag, Rondebosch     |                                      |
 | 7700, South Africa          |           - Janis Joplin             |
 | fax: 27-21-650 4023         |            (Pearl, 1971)             |

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