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
Creation and Climate Science with Dr. Jake Hebert
ICR physicist Dr. Jake Hebert* recently made a guest appearance on Good Heavens! A Podcast About the Universe with Wayne and Dan. Dr. Hebert presented...

NEWS
Inside May 2021 Acts & Facts
How should Christians respond when authorities are in conflict with God’s Word? Can we trust scientific measurements and reports about fossil...

ACTS & FACTS
Creation Kids: Volcanoes
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
Tributes of Honor and Remembrance
At the end of a long day, a boss I had early in my career would often tell me, “No more today, Henry. My brain is full.” I found his comments...

APOLOGETICS
Guided by Lynx to Appreciate Christ
Not all tour guides in Alaska are human. Amazing animals of Alaska can guide us into learning creation truth. In fact, such animals should direct us—like...

ACTS & FACTS
Zion National Park: Evidence of Deep Water Sand Waves
Brian Thomas, Ph.D., and Tim Clarey, Ph.D.* It was like driving into another world when we emerged from Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel right at dawn....

ACTS & FACTS
Is the Bible Evidence for Creation?
Have you ever had a skeptic tell you to keep the Bible out of it when discussing origins? Skeptics claim we Christians argue in a circle, that we are...

ACTS & FACTS
Vertebrate Origins on the Ropes…Again
In 1859, the Western world was turned upside down by the publication of Charles Darwin’s The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection or...

ACTS & FACTS
The Fossils Still Say No: Enigma of the Carboniferous Explosion
Many creationists and evolutionists alike are familiar with the initial huge explosion of complex marine life buried in the Cambrian rock layers at...

RESEARCH
Archaeopteryx by the Numbers
Sometimes scientists get a chance to collaborate. This happened last year when a fellow creation-based researcher invited me to contribute comments...