Gene duplication is the duplication of a section of DNA in which a gene is present. There are three ways in which this can take place. A homologous recombination, a retrotransposition event, or an entire chromosome being duplicated. Due to the fact that the new gene created does not have selective pressure, it does not have deleterious effects on it, and can mutate faster than the parent gene. Evolutionists claim gene duplication as a primary method, and sometimes the only method of evolutionary growth. There are, however, Creationists who believe that the genes of all species were intellectually created in a parent stage from which the other types of the same species may have derived.
Genome Duplication and Polyploidism
In some cases, there have been instances in which an entire genome has been known to duplicate itself. This is called Genome Duplication. This event is not a rare one. Evolutionists believe that the yeast genome provides evidence of having undergone genome duplication around 100 million years ago. Among all living creatures, plants are one of the most frequent genome duplicators. Wheat is what is called a hexaploid, meaning it contains six duplicated copies of its genome. When the genomes in a plant or animal duplicate, they are said to be polyploidous. For example. the probable ancestral haploid number of genes in bananas is believed to be 11. When we see instances of bananas with 22 and 33 chromosomes, instead of 11, we know that they are 2n, and 3n, polyploids. This is known to happen in many different plants such as domestic oats, peanuts, sugar canes, bananas, white potatoes, tobacco, cotton, and apples. Polyploidism has not been found extensively in animals, however. There are a few rare cases in which there have been polyploids found in select insects, fishes, amphibians, and reptiles. To this day, there is no evidence of mammals having polyploidous traits save one rat that was found in Argentina, that was shown to have a 4n polyploid, with a chromosome number of 102.
Evolution vs. Design
There are many evolutionists who claim gene duplication as the the major contributing factor in genetic mutations and evolutionary growth, if not the only, exclusive way. We know for a fact that these changes in genes definitely do take place, and that due to the mutational properties in the reproduced, "sister gene," there is much potential for growth that is determined by adapting to outside stimulants, but is it truly enough to support evolution's claims that everything spawned from single celled organisms and simpler genomes? Although there are compelling arguments for both sides, much of the evidence points to the mutations in these genes being responsible for changes in smaller groups of already established species, vs mutating one species into another. For example, the evidence may be enough to say that all dogs coming from the same canine family are similar or different due to gene duplications, but not enough to prove true to the extent that a new species such as felines came along due to gene duplication of canine genes. In fact, in many cases, the gene duplications that take place in humans, are ones that create massive impediments in the human performance, not increase it, therefore breaking the possibility that evolution, as defined as genetic changes for the betterment of an individual or species, could be due to gene duplication. One such problem with the gene duplications is Trisomy, or "down's syndrome". This is one problem that causes the human mind to perform irrationally, unable to process input and create logic through reason.
- Gene duplication by Wikipedia editors.
- Does gene duplication provide the engine for evolution? by Jerry Bergman.
- Ashcraft, Christopher W. Genetic Variability by Design, Journal of Creation 18(2) 2004.
- Bergman, Jerry. “Does gene duplication provide the engine for evolution?” Journal of Creation 20(1) 2006.
- John S Taylor, Jeroen Raes. "DUPLICATION AND DIVERGENCE: The Evolution of New Genes and Old Ideas" Annual Review of Genetics Palo Alto: 2004. Vol. 38 pg. 615