The Nobel Prize for Medicine

“A scientist at New York’s Rockefeller University won the Nobel Prize in medicine for discovering how proteins find their rightful places in cells — a process that goes awry in diseases like cystic fibrosis and plays a key role in the manufacture of some medicines”   This was the context of many news headlines a few years ago.

Scientists estimate that there are 100 billion cells in an adult human body. A typical human cell can contain a billion proteins. These proteins provide numerous services in the cell, in the cell wall, or even outside of the cell. According top the news reports, Dr. Guenter Blobel a German native who became a U.S. citizen in the ‘80’s, found that proteins are formed with a special “tag” that is used “somewhat like a zip code that indicates where to go.” This is an exciting report when you think about it.

  1. This “zip code” analogy is a little mis-leading though. If it was this simple, Dr. Blobel would not have received a Nobel Prize! The key to his experiments lied in the “missing” tags. These tags are lost before the protein ever reaches its destination. This made it very difficult to tell that tags were used at all since proteins serving different functions are identical. So a better analogy would go like this; You write a few letters and put them in envelops. Then you address and seal these envelops and put them back in the envelop box with the unaddressed plain envelops. Before you mail them, the addresses mysteriously disappear, but you mail the entire box and all the envelops get delivered properly anyway! God certainly has a sense of humor – doesn’t He! Only He could deliver that mail to the correct addresses!
  2. Don’t overlook the significance of this “tag”. This is another “code” just like the DNA. Think about the significance of a “code”. A code requires five functions in order to work:
    1. A need for a particular action must exist.
    2. A specific identifying “word” for that need must exist.
    3. This word must be transmitted to a receiving party.
    4. The receiving party must be able to recognize the word.
    5. The receiving party must be able to act on the specific need identified.

Without these five critical functions, all codes are dead, meaningless, and useless. Scott Soderstrom and I were recently talking about the marvels and complexity of the vast internet technologies. Computers certainly have the capability of communicating with each other. However, without intelligent input commanding these computers to communicate, they would simply do nothing at all. Their connection would serve no useful purpose. Nor would they ever accidentally communicate with each other (as the theory of evolution requires). The proteins and DNA of your body are communicating like an enormous internet system. These protein “tags” discovered by Dr. Blobel clearly had an intelligent Designer or they could never serve any useful purpose! – And we would never exist!

But God did create us! He created us to glorify Him! Science is exciting! But only from a proper Biblical perspective! Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them. Ps 139:16

Jay Auxt