Symbiosis and ecological adaptation

One Plus One Equals One

John Archibald
224 pages | 216x135mm
978-0-19-966059-9 | Hardback | 26 June 2014

Excerpt from the book description: “All living organisms use the same molecular processes to replicate their genetic material and the same basic code to ‘read’ their genes. The similarities can be seen in their DNA. Here, John Archibald shows how evolution has been ‘plugging-and-playing’ with the subcellular components of life from the very beginning and continues to do so today. For evidence, we need look no further than the inner workings of our own cells. Molecular biology has allowed us to gaze back more than three billion years, revealing the microbial mergers and acquisitions that underpin the development of complex life. One Plus One Equals One tells the story of how we have come to this realization and its implications.

Readership: Popular science readership interested in biology and molecular biology, as well as students of these courses.”

My comment: Symbiosis exemplifies how ecological variation results in ecological adaptations, not how organismal complexity evolved. The problem with this book appears to be common to all books written for a “popular science readership.” The theory of evolution is popular, and most of the science readership does not realize that the theory was invented by population geneticists in an attempt to support Darwin’s claims.

To do that, they started with what he observed and began to suggest what caused the manifestations of morphological and behavioral phenotypes while focusing only on the morphological phenotypes. They ignored the physiology of reproduction that links nutrient-dependent morphological phenotypes to the pheromone-controlled behavior of reproduction via conserved molecular mechanisms in species from microbes to man.

If John Archibald does anything more that tell the same story of natural selection and the evolution of biodiversity, he may teach others what they need to learn about ecological adaptations under the guise of telling them about the evolution of complex life. However, until someone who is academically responsible puts some distance between evolutionary theory by teaching others about the biological facts, which link the epigenetic landscape to the physical landscape of DNA in organized genomes, we can expect nothing more than more pseudoscientific nonsense.

Author: James Kohl

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