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Does life have its lessons?

Notes from Planet Earth

Now we’ve learned that what we thought for the past few decades was a large amount of “junk DNA” inhabiting our cells turns out to be highly important genetic regulatory information. Complicated organisms harboring an extensive variety of cells, each with different functions, cannot function properly without this all important regulation. While one of these cell varieties has evolved to become our nervous system which is a regulatory organ of almost unbelievable complexity. Indeed, we now know that the loss of appropriate regulation within a cell results either in the cell’s death or in a malignant cancer, while loss of species regulation results in a nasty invasive organism or a plague. Might these facts offer our complicated societies some valuable lessons as well?

Questions and suggestions from readers are welcomed and will be responded to in future editions of this column. Contact me at cwdingman2@frontier.com.

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