How Much of DNA is Functional?

i gave here in the past evidence for correlation between junk percentage and creature complexity:

another possible function for the “junk” part can be to prevent harmful mutations. if the majority of the genome is junk there is less chance to get harmful mutations in the functional part.

Hi @thoughtful, you wrote this:

after you wrote this:



This may be mentioned in the video in the sections I highlighted.

Yes. This section:

I don’t have a degree in science, and I took the minimum in high school and college. Kicking myself for not taking physics now.

It’s scientists’ job to consider other people’s hypotheses.

But yes, after all that defensiveness, point taken :slight_smile: :blush:

Didn’t we just discuss this happening in this thread? Some Microorganisms Can Bend Rules of Evolution - Peaceful Science

What scientific hypotheses? What makes you imagine that Jeanson has anything to do with science?

Then it’s a bad point. If you have to recap all previous levels when you define the next level, that isn’t a nested hierarchy at all. In real nested hierarchies, the order in which you state the characters shouldn’t matter; it should derive from the data themselves. For “engine-powered vehicles” and “four-wheeled vehicles”, neither set is nested within the other. I’m not even going to bother looking for whatever point he was trying to make, as long as it isn’t “this is a bad slide that has nothing to do with nested hierarchy”. Was that his point?


Yes he does off-handedly offer his sort of catch-all dismissal of pseudogenes there by conjecturing one way a pseudogene might still be functional is to serve as a source for RNA-inferference mediated regulation of canonical genes.

And that sure does sound interesting and convincing to someone who doesn’t know the first thing about molecular biology or gene expression, which of course most people in Jeanson’s intended audience are not. There are numerous problems with this suggestion.

Not the fact itself, that a pseudogene can constitute the source of RNA transcripts that take part in regulating a canonical gene. That’s a real thing. What his fantasy doesn’t explain is why there’s… a whole pseudogene in the first place, rather than simply the requisite interfering RNA fragment that would be required to block or initiate transcription. We’re talking basically the entire gene with introns, exons, and then accumulated point mutations in various parts. Much less does it explain the phylogenetic relationships one would obtain from inferring a phylogeny using the pseudogene locus from every species that shares a variant of it. Even less (that is to say, in no way) does it explain the frequency distribution of mutations being consistent with biochemistry across different species with mutated variants of the same pseudogene. Another factor to consider is the fact that some pseudogenes have no functional homologues, and hence whatever putative noisy transcripts they might produce have no other relevant genomic binding site than the pseudogene itself, and hence they’d be “regulating” their own dead genomic locus.

Now consider how much work it would take to get you to really understand everything I just said, so you could competently criticize it if you wanted to. And that only when and if you really did understand it, would you also be able to tell whether Jeanson’s argument was good one in the first place. And yet you seem to just blindly trust him. What has he done to earn your trust where thousands of other competent molecular biologists have not, short of merely express agreement with your religious beliefs?


All that’s necessary in reply is to say “dog’s-ass plot”.

That would be true if the mechanism of mutation were to sprinkle a fixed number randomly through the genome. Unfortunately for you, that’s not how it works.

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There are more hypotheses than hours in the day. There must be some kind of filter to separate the ones worth considering from those not worth considering. I applied that filter.


I anticipated this, but the prior post was already long enough. Yes, at the microbiological level, you can have horizontal gene transfer, such as discussed in the below book.

That does not at all weaken the case of what I said concerning gross features which characterize species. In fact, horizonal gene transfer has opposite effect in that viral introns are also subject to phylogenetic analyses, which again has no correlation with technology or a creator’s reuse of designs. That demonstrates nested hierarchy is due to actual descent, and not just a catalog of features, and is additional phylogenetic evidence for evolution. So there is no refuge in HGT.

Oh and by the way, allow me to summarize Jeanson’s excessively lengthy answer to Venema’s question in case you forgot what the question was.

Venema asked if Jeanson could imagine a scientific discovery that would cause him to think he might be wrong about his YEC view of origins.

Jeanson’s answer was no, because he’d have to first change his interpretation of scripture.

So, evidence doesn’t matter to Jeanson. Everything comes down to his interpretation of scripture.


No, he did not in terms of nested hierarchies as were referenced in the paper I linked. These are genes which are fully functional and coding for protein on one branch of a tree, and broken on another. Organisms can be grouped according the the status of the gene and found to be in keeping with already well established evolutional relationships.

Even if a strained case can be made that the purpose of these stretches of DNA is structural or regulatory, that does not address the question of why the gene is coding in one branch, and is a pseudogene in another. If it is structural, why do you need coding at all? Jeanson is offering a distracting deflection here. Pseudogenes remain a compelling evidence for common descent.


Believe me, nobody pays me to watch and provide commentary on youtube videos.


By what criterion or criteria did you determine that Jeanson’s hypotheses are scientific?

And I definitely want to ignore pseudoscientific hypotheses, or even scientific ones that conflict with existing data, which AFAIK covers everything YECs produce.

Do you want to ignore evidence in favor of rhetoric? What has Jeanson done to rigorously test his hypotheses? Isn’t that 1000x more important than making YouTube videos?


Mutations occur at a rate measured in mutations per nucleotide. Therefore, you would get the same number of mutations in functional human DNA if you removed all of the junk DNA.

No, it’s really not. It’s the job of people advancing hypotheses to present evidence for them.


It’s scientists’ job to test their own hypotheses. Has Jeanson done so?


Yep. I watched a 25-part on history and he already has laid out new history of a later Native American arrival from Asia based on his work. The tree he created matched with written history he had found. It was interesting. Basically this native American tribe didn’t reach the east coast and settle there very long before Europeans arrived.

That’s not testing a hypothesis.

Did it test a prediction of the hypothesis? Testing doesn’t mean looking for confirmation.

What made you think that:

Where did you get that idea?

Did you examine the evidence, or are you basing your claim entirely on hearsay, Valerie?

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