Daily Archives: April 18, 2009

Your Inner Amoeba

amoeba-manOver the summer, I hope to find time to read Neil Shubin’s book, Your Inner Fish:

Why do we look the way we do? What does the human hand have in common with the wing of a fly? Are breasts, sweat glands, and scales connected in some way? To better understand the inner workings of our bodies and to trace the origins of many of today’s most common diseases, we have to turn to unexpected sources: worms, flies, and even fish.

While these may be “unexpected sources” from the conventional, non-teleological perspective, readers of this blog know that this is the very type of thing we expect from my hypothesis of front-loading evolution.

Yes, this is all very cool that we can trace the inner workings of our bodies to the inner workings of fish, flies, and worms . But it’s better than this, folks. Remember the single-celled amoeba forming a multicellular life form before your very eyes?

The amoeba coalesce into multicellular life as a response to stress. What’s makes this so super cool is that they use the same circuitry the human body uses to respond to extreme stress: G protein receptor, G proteins, adenylyl cyclase, cAMP, and protein kinases. Humans use this circuit as part of their “fight and flight” response, where it is triggered by the hormone epinephrine (adrenalin). I don’t know if these amoeba make or use epinephrine, but others do.

Someday I may write a book entitled, Our Inner Amoeba as these continual findings of deep homology enhance the plausibility of my particular front-loading hypothesis.

BTW, I should also mention that such deep homology was not predicted to exist by the Modern Synthesis.

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Careful what you capshure