Life on a Young Planet by Andrew H. Knoll
(Princeton University Press, 2003)
Arthur S. Lodge | home
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Andrew Knoll: Life on a Young Planet
A criticism by A. S. Lodge:
Professor Knoll writes (on p.24):"Experts argue about its details, but all biologists agree that our ability to draw Darwin's great Tree of Life in its entirety constitutes one of the great intellectual achievements of the late twentieth century".
He does not tell us how he discovered what all biologists think. His statement conflicts with the following statements published by biologists.
1. In an article entitled Uprooting the Tree of Life (Scientific American 282, 90-05, 2000), W. Ford Doolittle stated "Now new hypotheses, having final forms we cannot yet guess, are called for."
2. In 1999, James Lake, Ravi Jain, and Maria Rivera wrote, "scientists started analyzing a variety of genes from different organisms and found that their relationships to each other contradicted the evolutionary tree of life derived from rRNA analysis alone".
3. In 1999, Hervé Philippe and Patrick Forterre wrote, "With more and more sequences available, it turned out that most protein phylogenies contradict each other as well as the rRNA tree".
4. In 1998, Carl Woese wrote, "No consistent organismal phylogeny has emerged from the many individual protein phylogenies so far produced".
5. In 1999, Michael Lynch wrote, "Clarification of the phylogenetic relationships of the major animal phyla has been an elusive problem, with analyses based on different genes and even different analyses based on the same genes yielding a diversity of phylogenetic trees".
6. In 2000, Jonathan Wells wrote, "So the Cambrian explosion remains a paradox. The fossil evidence shows that the major animal phyla and classes appeared right at the start, contradicting a major tenet of Darwin's theory". (Icons of Evolution, Regnery, p.48). This book contains references to the literature quoted above.
7. In 1998, Douglas J. Futuyma wrote, "The Cambrian explosion problem has not yet been solved". (Evolutionary Biology, Sinauer Associates,Sunderland, MA, 3rd edition, p.174).