Monday, 16 May 2022

Malevolent Designer News - Creationism's Favourite Malevolence Suffers Another Blow From Science

Congenital melanocytic nevus.
These can be very large and often involve the head, face or genitalia.
Skin drug treatments may regress dangerous birthmarks and prevent melanoma

Creationist mode:

The malevolent designer that creationists worship must be getting really pissed off with modern bio-medical scientist, the way they keep finding ways to combat the nasty things it designs to increase the suffering in the world, and all because someone scrumped one of its apples, allegedly.

Fresh from science's partial victory over the SARS-CoV-2 virus with which the divine malevolence caused a major pandemic, killing millions, ruining economies and businesses and making even the survivors suffer long-term complications, we have news that scientists led by investigators at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), MA, USA may have come up with a treatment for a rare form of melanoma that about 20,000 babies a year are born with.

The congenital melanoma is usually in the form of a large mole or 'giant nevus' that covers part of the face, head or other parts of the body and carries a very high risk of becoming malignant. Because of the high risk of malignancy, the treatment up to now had been surgical removal, which was not always successful in that the melanoma could recur, and which often left a large, permanent scar. Congenital giant nevi are normally caused by a mutation in the gene NRAS, which, as any intelligent [sic] design creationist will tell you, only happens by design.

The goals of our study were to develop a series of animal models designed to elucidate key biological features of these lesions, and to test nonsurgical drug treatments to skin, aiming to cause the nevus cells to recede, thereby removing the need for surgical treatments.

These findings will hopefully set the stage for additional refinements aimed to directly test such skin treatments on patients with congenital giant nevi. This work will include additional studies of safety, potential further enhancements of efficacy, and more analysis of underlying mechanisms. The overall goals are to prevent melanoma in these patients and also to avoid the disfigurement challenges from these lesions.

David E. Fisher, MD, PhD, senior author
Director of the Cancer Center’s Melanoma Program
And director of Cutaneous Biology Research Center. Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), MA, USA
The scientists set up pre-clinical models on which they could try various topical drugs to show that they could make the melanoma shrink and even disappear. Two of the models they used were:
  • Mice that had been genetically engineered to give them the mutant gene.
  • Mice that had received skin grafts containing human giant nevus cells.
Dr. Fisher and his team then used these models to analyse the different phases in the growth and development of the nevi and to use various drugs that block the signalling pathways known to be activated by mutant NRAS genes, singly or in combination as topical applications, to observe the results. They showed that some of the treatments led to significant nevus regressions. They also saw that the drugs also stimulated a form of inflammatory reaction which recruits white blood cells known as macrophages, to invade the site and destroy any remaining nevus cells, so causing the nevus to fully regress, even after just three applications. The treatment also prevented the development of skin cancers in the mice.

Just imagine how the designer of these hideous childhood cancers would be feeling, seeing all its efforts reduced to nothing by some clever human scientists, if it were real.

Creationist mode:

Graphical Abstract
The team's findings are published in Cell, regrettably, behind an expensive paywall. However, the highlights and abstract can be read here. In it, the team say:
  • Models of melanocyte inducible NrasQ61R mimic human congenital melanocytic nevi
  • Locally delivered MEK, PI3K, and c-KIT inhibitors are able to regress the nevi
  • SADBE regresses nevi in mice and human CMN xenografts and prevents melanoma in mice
  • SADBE induces inflammation and recruits macrophages that lead to nevus clearance
Of course, these sorts of advances are achieved by people who generally don't believe in magic creation and Bronze Age fairy tales, so don't need to subscribe to dogmas which prevent rational analysis and evaluation of scientific data. This is why nothing in the way of scientific advances are ever achieved by so-called 'creation scientists' and why pretensions pseudo-scientific organisation, like the 'Discovery Institute' or the 'Institute for Creation Research' never conduct scientific experiments and have no laboratory facilities. It's also why self-proclaimed 'creation scientists' never publish in peer-reviewed journals.

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