Date: April 30, 2021 08:16PM
In 1977, scientists showed that a virus called S-2L that infects cyanobacteria has no adenine in its genome. Instead, S-2L uses a nucleotide known as diaminopurine or 2-aminoadenine, shortened to Z, that makes three hydrogen bonds—rather than the two that adenine (A) makes—when paired with thymine (T). In three papers published today (April 29) in Science, researchers show that the use of Z by phages, those viruses that infect bacteria, is more widespread than previously believed, and they describe the pathways by which the alternative nucleotide is made and incorporated into phage genomes.
“It’s been known that there’s this phage that doesn’t have adenine in its genome . . . and it’s been an unsolved mystery about how it does that,” says Jef Boeke, a molecular biologist at New York University Grossman School of Medicine who was not involved in the work. These papers “spell that out in glorious molecular detail,” he tells The Scientist. Plus, the authors “have done an amazingly comprehensive job of showing that this is not one crazy outlier, but there’s a whole group of bacteriophages that have this kind of genetic material....
.... “There are a lot of questions that remain unanswered,” says Kaminski. In a paper that came out earlier this month on which he’s a coauthor, researchers shed light on one of those questions—how the S-2L genome is copied—by identifying the relevant polymerase. But Kaminski explains that one of the most difficult questions to answer will be when this mechanism evolved. “It’s supposed to be ancient because it roots deeply in the phylogenetic tree and because of the similarity of the [enzymatic] structures,” but it’s not clear whether Z or A genomes came first.“
Marine Phages kill 20% of the bacteria in the ocean everyday, even though they are not technically ‘alive’ or there is no consensus they are ‘alive’ but they are the most ubiquitous genetic ‘agent’ on the planet. There are more of them than all the other animal species combined. There are trillions in a tablespoon of seawater.
They are as old as bacteria, if not older.
They not only contain DNA and RNA, they also have their own genetic alphabet that is different from the alphabet used to create all other DNA/RNA, it has a Z instead of an A and scientists don’t know which came first, A or Z.
I know you’re asking, “WTF does ANY of that have to do with Recovery From MORmONism?”
Which is why it’s such a beautiful mystery, in a world full of confident dogmatic narratives and certainties. Perhaps our ‘creator’ isn’t an invisible superman in the sky, perhaps our ‘creator’ are the invisible army that is spread all over the Earth and was probably here before anything called ‘life’ evolved from the primordial soup.
And it really is true, the meek shall inherit the earth, because the most ubiquitous biological agent on the planet, will likely survive the man made apocalypse we could cause with the push of a button.