Preadaptations and Convergent Evolution

Echolocation and Prestin (the protein :D)
Prestin is a transmembrane protein (10-12 transmembrane domains) with the ability to convert a change in membrane potential into a mechanical force (Gleitsman et al., 2009). It is a “direct voltage-to-force converter” and plays a crucial role in sound amplification in various organisms and thus play an important part in an organism’s ability to sense sound waves (Dallos and Fakler, 2002, Li et al., 2010). What does the protein look like? From Dallos and Fakler, 2002 (Figure 1).

Figure 1: Prestin protein. From Dallos and Fakler, 2002.

Recent studies suggest that not only echolocating, but the Prestin gene that plays a role in echolocation, converged in several different species (different species of bats, dolphins, toothed whales) to perform the same function with convergent changes in the coding DNA of the gene (Li et al., 2010, Teeling, 2009).

Interestingly, the Prestin gene is found in an organism (Trichoplax adhaerens) with no nerve cells, sensory cells or muscle cells. Trichoplax adhaerens emerged before biletarians, way before any organisms without any sound sensing organs (Figure 2:)

Figure 2: Tree of life (Adapted from

The organism only has four cell types (Figure 3).

Figure 3: Link

So what is the Prestin gene doing in the genome of an organism with no hearing apparatus or nervous system and emerged long before these kinds of organisms or organs for sound wave mechanosensing?

Perhaps echolocation relies on a common design? Well these guys say so…

I donno about that (sounds like the words of IDiots, but I digress), perhaps the manifestation of echolocation relies on a distinct form of matter…the coding of Prestin? The emergence of this protein form just guaranteed that echolocation was on the cards over vast evolutionary time scales even though it was present way before echolocation even played an important role in nature.

I dunno, your god put it there?

Well that settles it then. Your god put it there. Yay.


So… when the section says “Science and Technology”, you decide to talk about God? Wonderful logic there muffy, and you guys say religious people are bothered with God and bitch and moan that I derail threads. How amusing.

You ask question.

I answer like your brain.

You don’t like?

I no care.


Ok bye now, come back when you have anything useful to say thanks or something that resembles some form of intelligence. Remember, misrepresenting and mischaracterization of others so that you can look cool and hip to your lapdogs might be cool to you, but there are others interested in a little more than this superficial BS you like so much.

Your say be useful?

Mmm, sorry, no. :-*


Ok fine, I will let you be useless.
So how about that preadaptation and convergence? Interesting not?

Of course it’s interesting! But directed? Evidence for teleology? Proof of guided evolution? Not on your whatevers. That’s why you post this stuff: Not because it’s intriguing but because you can squeeze some god mileage out of it.

Your respect for science is nil. Your pretences and deceits are obvious to anyone who has looked at what and how you present stuff.

But I repeat myself.


Hey man, I’m wondering if it was not just one of those chance fluke mutation thingies. And whether this Prestin stuff doesn’t just remain in this funny little organism as junk DNA, with no function yet known, or maybe with no function at all ( imagine THAT!! ).

Of course if the Great Designer had really wanted to help this Trichoplax adhaerens he might have given it some wheels or something. Wheels are really cool things, but the Great Designer didn’t seem to have any use for them. Sad.

Sure does. I will offer to give the authors a short sharp kick in their card-readers for incorrectly using a word with teleological implications. Silly people, really.

Ain’t it amazing how chance mutational schitt that happens sometimes results in changes that become important for survival selection? And how said schitt ends up being of no use at all to other organisms ( such as the one you refer to wif piccies an’ all )?

More exciting developments are “on the cards” in a swamp near you. :wink:

( Oy vey, how I hate all this biology stuffs ).

Blah blah blah, more delusional caricutures of others from you. Don’t you get tired of spewing your BS?

Interestingly, the Prestin gene is found in an organism (Trichoplax adhaerens) with no nerve cells, sensory cells or muscle cells. Trichoplax adhaerens

I agree, that is interesting. Can you please link this statement to a source? I’d like to see if the gene is expressed or not. Thanks.


Oh vey, another moron talking about the great designer and making philosophically vacuous arguments in the science sections.

The link to the gene is provided. However further research needs to be done to determine the function of the protein in that organism and whether it is expressed or not.

I’ll splash out and bet R1-00c it’s plain junk DNA. :stuck_out_tongue:

Teleological, I scanned briefly through the lengthy article and could not locate the Prestin gene reference, but it is Friday and my eyes are tired :-\ - where exactly did you see that the Prestin gene is present in Trichoplax?


So far, nothing has been proven to be junk, just speculation, so good luck that. Bit anti-scientific to throw your arms up in the air and say: “look, we can’t find a function, therefor we are just going to assume it is junk.”"

Go here
Select protein (above the seach text bar)
Search for Prestin
Click on any organism’s prestin protein (e.g. prestin [Meriones unguiculatus])
Copy the sequence
Then go here
Select Blastp (In alignment program)
Paste sequence into box and submit job
Then click on the best hit and you should get this

You can use that sequence and compare it to many other species.

Go here and blast it.

Wowee, it’s just too coincidental that Prestin-Based Outer Hair Cell Motility Is Necessary for Mammalian Cochlear Amplification, that T. adhaerens uses cilia for locomotion and that all at the same time cilia are instrumental in auditory function!

This god is just wa-a-a-a-y too clever for words, putting hair on Placozoa so that they can hear predators coming through their feet, a cunning plan he extended to grasshoppers too.

What can I say? I am stunned to bits.

ETA: In case it’s not clear, cilia = hair.


Hey look, you got a hypothesis going there old muffy, now all you have to do is go and test it and see what exactly Prestin does in Trichoplax (you know, a bit more specific, don’t want you to throw your hands in the air and say you know it all you know). Don’t know why you sound so incredulous… prestin is a mechanosensor that was obviously co-opted into various forms of mechanosensing…
So much for rwenzori chop’s junk DNA “hypothesis”. Why couldn’t you just do this in the first place… oh wait, you still like to use God in your discussions. My oh my, and they say religious people are bothered with God…tsk tsk

Right, and you read my reply, studied all of those references and typed up a 60-plus word reply in, let’s see now, seven minutes and fifteen seconds, yes?

Hey, far be it from me to pretend that I can compete with such unparalleled genius.