Conclusion: mutational load is unlikely to impose a low limit on the functional fraction of the genome. In other words, Dan Graur’s statement ( “If ENCODE is right, then evolution is wrong”) was wrong. (Note: Graur says he was one of the two reviewers for this paper, and approved it without revision.)
It would be nice if this study shut down the argument that ENCODE showed that most of the genome is functional, therefore evolution is wrong. Of course, I’d also like an effective treatment for covid-19, as long as I’m wishing. And a pony.
It was a silly thing to say, hyperbolic in Graur’s patented style. Better: “if ENCODE is right, my model of selection is wrong.” Of course ENCODE isn’t right, and it isn’t yet clear that Graur’s model of selection is wrong either.