PZ has an excellent story about the Institute of Creation Research's new "theory" that the Hawaiian bobtail squid, which produces venom and houses bioluminescent bacteria, is evidence not just of God's Creation, but also that nature turned on Man after The Fall, because nature hates us now. PZ's post is fantastic and educational, but I can't just sit back and not get a few kicks in myself. Erik, you're gonna love this:
"The reflectins seem to be unique to squid, coded for by at least six genes (specific DNA segments). In addition, researchers have found that the Hawaiian bobtail squid efficiently uses an exclusive bilobed ("two-lobed") light organ to its advantage. A species of bioluminescent bacteria called Vibrio fischera in the light organ receives nourishment from the squid. In return, the bacteria secrete a tracheal cytotoxin designed to control the development of the light organ.
"This cytotoxin is a small segment of the deleterious bacteria that causes whooping cough in humans. But perhaps the toxin served a more useful function, as we see in the squid, prior to the introduction of sin into God's creation, which led to the Fall and the current curse under which creation groans (Romans 8:22).
"To conclude, not only is biophotonic design evidence for a clearly seen creation (Romans 1:20), but the Hawaiian bobtail squid in particular provides the creation scientist with a possible original benign function for disease-causing bacteria. Truly, God's creation declares--and reflects--His glory (Psalm 19:1)."
Aside from the bioluminscence issue, which PZ more adequately explains away, the real interest here is the cytotoxin, which "helps" stimulate growth of the squid's organ. This actually makes sense from an evolutionary point of view (shock and awe!). The bacteria which pooped out harmful or disease-causing bacteria would have killed the host, which isn't any good to the bacteria. The bacteria which kept its host alive survived. The squid and the bacteria exist together, true, but neither is probably inherently aware of the other's presence. The squid isn't thinking, "Dang, I hope that Vibrio colony is okay." Likewise, the Vibrio colony doesn't give two craps about the squid. It would be like your stomach bacteria suddenly becoming aware of your existence. "Hold on a second, guys, I think we're living inside of a person's gut."
Better yet, the cytotoxin causes whooping cough in humans. It probably causes disease in other animals too, but the key here is that it causes disease in humans. And the reason is that Eve went and ate that stupid apple, and then Adam did too, and now Nature will have its revenge. Or something. Tyrannosaurus rex ate coconuts before The Fall, so maybe the Hawaiian bobtail's cytotoxins were used as a moisurizer.
You can't make this stuff up, and while I wish it was an April Fool's day joke, it's not. Check out PZ's post today for more!