Between 1932 and 1942, Francis M. Pottenger, Jr., M.D., conducted a multi-generation nutrition study on cats with the goal of applying what he learned to human nutrition since cats also have mammalian biology. He published a book called,
Pottenger's Cats: A Study in Nutrition
In his study he fed one group of cats a raw meat diet and the other group a cooked diet. In a third group he fed 1/3 raw and 2/3 cooked. He noted that the cats fed the raw meat diet thrived while the cats on cooked meats/protein exhibited infertility, emotional imbalance and degenerative conditions noted in examinations of their skeletons.
I want to share with you a YouTube documentary of this study. It only takes a couple minutes to watch it. You will have to fast-forward to 3:00 minutes to watch the Pottenger study. The first part of the video talks about Weston A. Price and his studies on dental health in hunter gatherers. Here it is:
So are you more open to raw-Paleo after having watched this video?
My take in considering raw proteins vs. cooked is the mechanism that alters the protein molecules must be the same in order to draw a direct comparison. An extreme heating of protein should theoretically yield a different outcome than the biological process of denaturation via gastric juice. One method of protein-bond breaking uses heat, the other depends on enzymes that exist due to evolution. Therefore I don't think the cooking process should be equated with digestive denaturation.
Beyond the basic contrast between heat reactions and enzyme activity, it's possible that while cooking unravels protein it also destroys a high percentage of amino acid blocks, rendering them useless and thus degrading the quality of the protein source whereas digestive denaturation mainly unravels the amino acid blocks while leaving a much higher percentage of them intact and usable.
Also for further research, consider this example where heat destorys the essential amino acids lysine, arginine and tryptophan:
"Protein-bound lysine has been known for several years to be inactivated by heat so that it is not nutritionally available."