Saturday, 19 November 2016

Amazing Cells: “Miniature Cities Running at 100 Percent Efficiency"

Cell: The master of efficiency. Image courtesy of Magnus Manske, Creative Commons (CC BY 3.0).

1 Nucleus, 2 Nuclear pore, 3 Rough endoplasmic reticulum (RER), 4 Smooth endoplasmic reticulum (SER), 5 Ribosome on the rough ER, 6 Proteins that are transported, 7 Transport vesicle, 8 Golgi apparatus, 9 Cis face of the Golgi apparatus, 10 Trans face of the Golgi apparatus, 11 Cisternae of the Golgi apparatus.

Joel Kontinen

Engineers and planners could learn a thing or two about the efficacy of plant cells. A paper published in the journal Current Biology reveals how the tiny factories in cells work as effectively as they do.

The research focused on the largest factory in a plant cell, the endoplasmic reticulum.

An article in Science Daily summarises the findings:

Michigan State University researchers in Federica Brandizzi's lab, for the first time, have identified how plants' largest cell factory moves to maintain vital functions, which could lead to advances in improving plant cells' critical functions and growing better crops.”

It seems that the more we learn about cells, the less credible any Darwinian explanation becomes. Cells are designed to carry out things, and what they do, they do extremely well, smoothly and efficiently:

‘Healthy cells operate as smoothly as the best Minecraft city imaginable,’ said Federica Brandizzi, MSU Foundation Professor of plant biology. ‘The miniature cities are fully equipped with all of the facilities, or organelles, that are necessary for a smooth-running operation.’

It does not sound like the efforts of the blind watchmaker at all:

Administration center, factories and even recycling centers are all there, running at 100-percent efficiency. In contrast to the infrastructures and city buildings in cells, however, the organelles, are not built on static foundations. They are huge, mobile cellular cargos that travel rapidly to reach resources and deliver products.”

The researchers discovered the protein SYP73 that “keeps cellular cargo on track, quite literally,” as the Science Daily article puts it.

Intelligent design in nature is obvious. We see it in plants, animals and even ourselves. Just think about two tiny molecular motors, i.e., dynein and kinesin, that bear all the hallmarks of supernatural intelligence.


Michigan State University. 2016. Discovering what keeps cellular cargo on track. Science Daily. (17 November).