Fossil Plant Chromosomes Look Modern | The Institute for Creation Research

Fossil Plant Chromosomes Look Modern

As mere fragments, most fossils reveal only small hints of ancient life forms, like a single segment from a crinoid stem, or a lone hadrosaur tooth. But a fossilized fern's stem recently discovered in Sweden shows its every detail, sending some clear messages about its origin.

Publishing in the journal Science, three authors from Sweden described the spectacular sub-cellular preservation of a royal fern in Jurassic rock.1 Mineral-rich water infiltrated its tissues faster than they could even begin to disintegrate.

The team cut the fossil into thin slices and placed them under a microscope to see "membrane-bound cytoplasm, cytosol granules, [and] possible amyloplasts" within the fern cells. Equally rare were the cells' nuclei "with conspicuous nucleoli," tiny structures inside each nucleus.

They even found chromosomes frozen in various stages of cell division, including prophase, telophase, metaphase and possibly anaphase.

The researchers compared the fossil chromosomes to those of living royal ferns and found no differences. They wrote, "Here, we present direct paleontological evidence for long-term genomic stasis in this family in the form of a calcified osmundaceous [royal fern] rhizome [tiny root structure] from the Lower Jurassic of Sweden with pristinely preserved cellular contents, including nuclei and chromosomes."1

After 180 million supposed years to work its magic, how could the neo-Darwinian engine of natural selection of beneficial mutations not have made some changes to this fern? Yet the fern remains the same.

During this same proposed timespan, some furry little mammal supposedly evolved all the way to people—a fantastic story involving wholesale reorganizations of dozens of fundamentally distinct body forms—while not one chromosome of the royal fern changed at all.

The study authors wrote that this fossil comparison "represents a notable example of evolutionary stasis among plants."1 Instead of merely "notable," perhaps they should have said, "impossible."

Plus, isn't "evolutionary stasis" an oxymoron? Evolution is supposed to mean "constant change," and "stasis" means "no change." Something unscientific appears to be going on within a scientist who interprets even a total lack of evolution in an evolutionary way.

The similarity between a living royal fern and its fossil counterpart plainly presents a problem for millions-of-years. Why do these ferns look so similar? Because their ancestors were ferns that God created only thousands of years ago, according to His own eyewitness testimony.2

References

  1. Bomfleur, B., S. McLaughlin, and V. Vajda. 2014. Fossilized Nuclei and Chromosomes Reveal 180 Million Years of Genomic Stasis in Royal Ferns. Science. 343 (6177): 1376-1377.
  2. Genesis 1:12.

* Mr. Thomas is Science Writer at the Institute for Creation Research.

Article posted on April 16, 2014.

The Latest
NEWS
Unlocking the Mysteries of Genesis Conference Coming to Lincoln,...
Are you looking for real answers to the tough questions of faith and science? Come to the Unlocking the Mysteries of Genesis Conference on June 26 at Lincoln...

NEWS
Inside June 2021 Acts & Facts
How do the Everglades illustrate Bible-affirming biology? Why do marine sponges inspire engineers? What can we learn about God’s providence from...

NEWS
Two Excuses for Human Evolution Confusion
Public school textbooks assert that apes and humans emerged from an ape-like animal, whereas Genesis 1 says that God created humans and the different animal...

DAYS OF PRAISE DEVOTIONALS
Summer 2021
...

ACTS & FACTS
Creation Kids: Coral Reef
Christy Hardy and Susan Windsor* You’re never too young to be a creation scientist! Kids, discover fun facts about God’s creation with...

ACTS & FACTS
The Legacy and Faith of a Godly Father
Good fathers serve an essential role in the family, and it’s surely fitting that we express our love and gratitude on Father’s Day. After...

APOLOGETICS
Even Seaweed Is Proof of God's Providence
Tidewater-tossed seaweeds display God’s providence.1,2 Hidden in plain view, tidewater seaweeds are spectacular exhibits of Christ’s...

ACTS & FACTS
What It Takes to Make a Cell: A Review of The Stairway to Life
Rare is the science book that can hold even an average reader’s attention. But The Stairway to Life does just that. Coauthored by biochemist Laura...

ACTS & FACTS
Does Radioisotope Dating Prove an Old Earth?
Tim Clarey, Ph.D., and Vernon R. Cupps, Ph.D.* When most people think about radioisotope dating, they think of carbon-14 (C-14), or radiocarbon...

ACTS & FACTS
The Everglades: Two Biology Basics the Bible Got Right
Brian Thomas, Ph.D., and Gary Parker, Ed.D.* Imagine a river 50 miles wide and 100 miles long but only inches deep. Its slow flow is hidden...