Ian Musgrave does a wonderful job explaining the recent Science paper on the evolution of hormone binding sites. This is the work that Behe has called “piddling”, and claims that it has no relevance to the evolvability of complex biochemical systems. Ian takes this idea apart with a quick tour of the wandering goalposts of irreducible complexity:
Behe and the Discovery Insitute have reacted quickly and negatively to this paper. But in doing so they display a curious amnesia. Behe says:
I certainly would not classify their system as IC. The IC systems I discussed in Darwin’s Black Box contain multiple, active protein factors. Their “system”, on the other hand, consists of just a single protein and its ligand.”
Yet this “system” is precisely the thing that Behe uses in his exemplar for the Behe and Snoke paper, the binding of DPG to haemoglobin. And Behe has said in testimony to the Dover trial that the Behe and Snoke paper on evolution of binding sites is about irreducible complexity. So if the evolution of the DPG binding site (where you only need two mutations to make a functioning DPG binding site) is an example of IC, then the evolution of the aldosterone binding site is also.
Poor Behe. The man continues his ever-accelerating slide into the land of pathetic jokes.