This Week in PNAS

In PNAS this week: phylogeny of opsin family genes, range of functional 16S ribosomal RNA sequences in E. coli, and more.

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The suggestion that rRNA

The suggestion that rRNA secondary structure is the principal determinant of its native activity follows ineluctably from the brilliantly insightful work of Woese and colleagues some 30 years ago. Which is not meant to detract from this nice work by Kitahara et al., but rather to marvel (being reminded once again) not only at Woese's cleverness but his courage is standing up to considerable skepticism by the molecular evolutionists and the "RNA folding" computer jockeys of the era.

"garnering evidence that

"garnering evidence that opsin developed the ability to detect light more than an estimated 11 million years or so ago. "

Actually, I think the first light-detecting opsin evolved 700 million years ago, but it evolved from a non-light sensitive
ancestor into a light-sensitive descendant in just 11 million years, according to the phylogeny, data, and computer model.