ofonorow wrote:(One answer is that almost no other species have survived without it, and perhaps our enormous brain had something to do with it?)
It is a legit question: Why if vitamin C is so important did we lose the ability to make it. (One answer is that almost no other species have survived without it, and perhaps our enormous brain had something to do with it?)
Steve Brown wrote:What we have now, in synthetic vitamin C, is a triumph of evolution; it has found a way to restore healthy levels of vitamin C in our bodies, via the intelligence to discover, isolate, and synthesize vitamin C. I find it remarkable, really extraordinary, to have been born not only within a decade or two of the discovery of vitamin C, but to have been born to a father who was a chemical engineer involved in the manufacture of vitamin C at Hoffman-LaRoche, a Swiss pharmaceutical company that in 1935 acquired the patent to the Reichstein process for making vitamin C. My father was in charge of production of vitamin C by the metric ton, so our family always had an adequate supply. It is extraordinary, in light of the millions of years of human evolution and history, to have been born into that family, at just that time, in 1949.
ofonorow wrote:I can understand consternation at the evolution versus so-called "intelligent design" debate (I am sure both have an element of truth!) and while it is a conundrum for evolutionists to explain the GULO defect, why would the Inteligent Designer have omitted what was possibly the most important nutrient for health?
ofonorow wrote:I can understand consternation at the evolution versus so-called "intelligent design" debate (I am sure both have an element of truth!) and while it is a conundrum for evolutionists to explain the GULO defect, why would the Inteligent Designer have omitted what was possibly the most important nutrient for health?[/b][/color]
ofonorow wrote:Thank you for sharing this Steve. I don't think you ever mentioned how close you were to the development and commercial manufacture of vitamin C... Fascinating.. Lots of questions come to mind ... What ever you would like to remember and post about this.. please so.
The present results indicate that preferential transport of vitC from the mother to the fetus is overridden during sustained maternal vitC deficiency, maintaining maternal vitC concentration at the expense of the offspring. This contradicts the notion that a fetus is protected from vitC deficiency by the placental Na-dependent vitC co-transporter, SVCT2, thus fetal development may be susceptible to the negative effects of maternal vitC deficiency.
Steve Brown wrote:Owen, we do know that evolution has arrived at very good but often imperfect designs. An interesting book I read is Why Evolution is True, by Jerry A. Coyne. He explains that evolution of higher life forms was usually a process of adding successive layers of elaboration on less advanced forms. For that reason, the design of the ancestral fish is more straightforward and logical than the design of the human being who descended, through successive stages, from that fish. One consequence of that is that in the fish, the nerve that controls muscles for swallowing runs straight from the brain to those muscles. In the human, however, that nerve runs from the brain, down into the chest, loops around the heart, and goes back up to the muscles that control swallowing.
What I mean about "intelligence of the universe" is that it has the necessary properties for the creation of elements, compounds, the emergence of life, and for evolution to occur. More than that, the universe has the necessary properties that enable us to be conscious beings. Since that occurred to me, I regard it to be a profound revelation, even the basis for spiritual belief that being is an essential aspect of the universe. It is evident to me that evolution occurred in accordance with the laws of physics, as a chaotic process filtered by natural selection. What intelligence there may appear to be in the design of life results from the nature of nature, as it were, not necessarily the work of a master designer at a virtual CAD workstation. If such were the case, then that master designer must have a wry sense of humor, expressed in the Rube Goldbergian designs that have emerged. Regarding the disabled GULO gene in humans, it is evident that natural selection favored that mutation at some stage, although it became disfavored, resulting in scurvy, at later stages. However, intelligence eventually compensated for that genetic defect, manifested in the discovery and synthesis of vitamin C.
So, 223 genes is more than two thirds of the difference between me, you and a chimpanzee!
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