Article by Brian Thomas
Shuffling genetic information has long been framed as a biological mechanism that can generate variety as well as fuel evolution. However, new details of a common cellular genetic shuffling process called “crossing over” reveal a tightly controlled system that operates under strict parameters and requires highly specified cellular machinery. It is as if each generation was programmed to have variation, and that variation had strict limitations—limitations that would preclude Darwinian evolution.
When egg or sperm cells are produced, their chromosomes go through crossing over. Chromosomes are linear strands of DNA that have been tightly packaged for cell division. In crossing over, a piece of one chromosome is traded for a piece on an adjacent chromosome. This effectively shuffles genetic information for the next generation, like swapping out certain discrete chapters within a set of encyclopedias prior to reprinting it.
New insights into the nature of crossing over reveal that precisely specified proteins called “condensins” are deployed at just the right times and in the right amounts to help regulate crossing over.
Shuffling of already existing genetic information through crossing over does not provide new information. And if selection merely preserves the pre-existing information, then what do either of these processes have to do with Darwinian evolution, which needs brand new advantageous information to select?
What this science shows is exactly what one would expect if creatures were engineered by a Creator, rather than being evolutionary products of the natural universe. Both well-organized regulation and well-designed molecular machinery are used in crossing over, demonstrating the Creator’s genius. Variation is also observed occurring through crossing over within prescribed limits in created kinds, and this shows the Creator’s benevolence. He outfitted His creatures with the potential to adapt and survive in various circumstances—circumstances that, being all-knowing, He foresaw.