I found this video by a creationist who claims that the nylon eating ability of bacteria was not the result of an increase in genetic information. Does he actually have a point or is he wrong?
Nylon is an artificial polymer invented by Wallace Hume in Dupont. The nylon polymer or the linkages that bind the subunits together were not found in nature before 1935. By 1975, bacteria capable of hydrolyzing nylon found in waste water from nylon plants were discovered. Genes for hydrolyzing the artificial polymer nylon could not have been present from the beginning in the bacteria, since in the absence of the substrate (nylon not present before 1935), the gene product becomes non-functional, and the gene would have mutated to uselessness or an entirely different function in a few hundred/thousand years by random mutations.
The author William M. Thwaites, 1985 states in his paper that,
The proteins that are formed by frame-shift mutations are totally useless sequences of amino acids that have no structural, antigenic, or enzymatic relationship to the original protein. This time, however, the new protein was useful. Being useful, it was retained by natural selection and was finally discovered by biochemists who noticed a bacterium that could live on industrial waste.
Generation of the nylon hydrolyzing genes is standard mutation followed by selection as experimental data does not support directed mutation and no known mechanism supports directed mutation. This is shown by the author in the paper 'Biodegradation of nylon oligomers'
Through selective cultivation using nylon oligomers as a sole source of carbon and nitrogen, two strains which initially had no metabolic activity for nylon oligomers, Flavobacterium sp. KI725 and Pseudomonas aeruginosa PAO1, were given the ability to degrade xenobiotic compounds.