"Genetics / DNA / Genes / Heredity" Essays

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Biology Genes Are Regions Term Paper

Term Paper  |  1 pages (442 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Prokaryotes produce a similar effect by shifting reading frames during translation (Gene pp). The translation of RNA into a protein also starts with a specific start and stop sequence (Gene pp). Once produced, the protein interacts with the many other proteins in the cell, according to the cell metabolism, finally producing the trait (Gene pp).

The 3 types of RNA: Messenger RNA m-RNA An RNA copy of a gene;

Ribosomal RNA r-RNA Ribosomal structure; also includes the enzyme peptidyl transferase; Transfer RNA t-RNA Transfer amino acids to ribosome; have anticodons which match the m-RNA codons (Lecture pp).

Mutations may occur in a several ways, for example natural variations within regulatory sequences appear to underlie many of the heritable characteristics seen in organisms and the influence of such variations on the trajectory of evolution through natural selection may be as large as or larger than variation in sequences that encode proteins (Gene pp). Errors during DNA replication may lead to the duplication of a gene, which may diverge over time and though the two sequences may remain the same or be only slightly altered, they are typically regarded as separate genes (Gene pp).

Work Cited

Gene. Retrieved October 19, 2005 from:


Lecture 8: DNA & Heredity Transcription & Translation

http://members.aol.com/Bio50/LecNotes/lecnot08.html… [read more]

Genomes and Comparative Genomics Term Paper

Term Paper  |  8 pages (2,012 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


These specific genes which find expression in one species while remaining passive in another are responsible for the traits pertaining to the particular species. It would also give us an idea of the effect of the structural differences between the genes in the different species.

Homology of sequences

Homology is an important concept in studying genome sequences. Detection of homologous sequences is the essence of sequence analysis. Similarities in sequences or structures may either be the result of divergent or convergent trends. Homology is actually a measure of divergence between species, which shared a common origin. So a homology actually indicates the degree of divergent relationship. Homology study also helps us infer gene functionality. Within the homologous sequences proteins may either carry out the same functions or different functions. It is necessary to identify these differences between homologues. The proteins that carryout similar functions in different species are known as orthologues while the proteins that perform different (though related) functions are known as paralogues. Orthologous proteins hold the key in our study of molecular paleontology. Biologists have studied and developed phylogenetic trees, which reveal the relationship between bacteria, fungi, insects and many other highly evolved animals. [TK Attwood, 12]

The study of paralogous proteins, on the other hand helps us understand the evolutionary designs of nature. This is because paralogous proteins are derived from successive duplication of the same gene with subsequent adaptation. However it is precisely this complex paralogous and orthologous relationships, which makes it difficult for us to arrive at any concrete classification of the protein family. The key challenge faced by the experts in the field of bioinformatics however, is the effective analysis of the enormous amount of information (sequenced data) that is currently available and in interpreting them with respect to the protein structure and function and correctly correlating them to evolution pattern. With our continuous progress in understanding protein-folding mechanism we are well poised to handle this mammoth task. [Rost, 1988]


We are making rapid progress in the subject of genetics and within the next few years we can expect tremendous changes in the field of bioinformatics. The completion of the human genome project and the development of new time saving sequencing techniques would offer entirely new possibilities in diverse fields. The possibility of Genetic therapy would provide new hopes for people with hereditary disorders and the advancements in molecular treatment would mark a new era in medical diagnosis and treatment. In conclusion we can say that in the twenty-first century marked by the congruence of information technology and genetics we are making a significant step in understanding and unraveling the mysteries of nature


Mullis, KB (1990), Scientific American, April 1990, 56

Hecht, J., 19 May 2003, Chimps are human, gene study implies, New Scientist

Cohlan, A., 30 May 2002, "Just 2,5% of DNA turns mice into men," New Scientist

TK Attwood & DJ Parry Smith, "Introduction to bio Informatics," Published by ADDison Wesley Longman Ltd., 1999

Rost B, "Marrying Structure and Genomics,"… [read more]

Roles Do Genes Play Essay

Essay  |  4 pages (1,562 words)
Bibliography Sources: 4


Multifactorial inheritance means that several, rather than simply one gene causes a particular trait to be expressed (such as height or intelligence). "As the number of multifactorial genes for the trait increases, the liability for the disease increases. When it reaches a threshold, the liability is so great that abnormality, what we call disease, results" (Multifactorial inheritance, 2012, Human Genetics).

There appears to be a different 'threshold of expression' for such multifactorial problems, including cleft palates, neural tube defects, or hip dysplasia. For example, "one of the environmental influences thought to contribute to hip dysplasia is the baby's response to the mothers' hormones during pregnancy. Once a child has been born with hip dysplasia, the chance for it to happen again in a male or female child is about 6% overall. In other words, there is a 94% chance that another child would not be born with hip dysplasia" (Multifactorial inheritance, 2012, Children's Hospital of Wisconsin). Studying twins with the same genetic composition helps researchers to better isolate which environmental factors predispose the expression of the genes.


Cri du chat syndrome. (2010). National Human Genome Research Institute. National Institutes of Health. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services


DNA replication. (2002). VBS homepage. Retrieved:


Learning about Neurofibromatosis. (2010). National Human Genome Research Institute.



Mainardi, Paola Cerruti. (2006). Cri du chat syndrome. Orphanet J. Rare Dis, 1(33).



McCance, K.A. & Huether, S.E. (2010). Pathophysiology: The biologic basis for disease in adults and children (6th ed).

Multifactorial inheritance. (2012). Children's Hospital of Wisconsin. Retrieved:


Multifactorial…… [read more]

How Genetics Affect Child Development Term Paper

Term Paper  |  5 pages (1,393 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


Genetics and Child Development

Child Genetics

Genetic research shows that genetic content of a child account for their characteristics and behavior. The environment also plays a vital role in child development. It is increasingly evident that no single fact can explain the intricacies of change and growth from childhood to old age. Environmental and biological factors are almost similar and related, and it is sometimes difficult to separate behaviors environmentally influenced and biologically influenced. Different genetic contents elicit different reactions from their parents, and different environments result to differences among individuals. Different researches have been carried out to determine the extent to which genes affect behavior in children; conclusions made show behavior in children has some genetic input.

Effect of genes on development

Biological factors are chromosomes, genes, human reproduction and cell division; which affect the building blocks of the human organism. Genetic factors also determine a child's physical traits, however, behavioral and emotional patterns might be influenced by genetic factors, but not always; an excellent example is attention deficit hyperactive disorder which is a disorder strongly linked to genes. Environmental factors are social, ecologic, psychological influences, which affect the child's growth.

From conception, hereditary and genetics have a noteworthy effect on the foetal development and growth. These genetic contents affect the way a child grows physically, socially and interpersonally. Genes determine the physical and also the chemical properties that govern the function and every structure of the body cells. The genes and molecules are influential on who the child will become. The chromosomes and genes of the child are unique, and have instructions which determine the child's eye color, sex, height, and predisposition for certain illnesses. Sometimes the genes trigger the metabolic system to work correctly. There is also a belief that genetics sometimes influence certain behaviors like depression, addictive behaviors, homosexuality, or even violent behaviors (Bowden, 2009, pg 78).

Living things transmit genetic codes, which specify a certain growth pattern, and it influences the organization of the offspring. Inheritance patterns include recessive and dominant inheritance. The patterns influence transmission of traits; some of these traits are hair color, eye color and genetic defects. At conception, linkage of the parent's sex chromosomes determines the child's gender. The gender affects child development and growth in the context of physical, social and personal characteristics. External and internal sex-specific genes are present at birth, and the differences continue to be seen as the child grows. Physical traits that influence physical growth include height, hair distribution and physical physique. Longevity and heath are also seen to be prevalent in one gender, hence influenced by genes. An excellent example is hemophilia, color blindness and muscular dystrophy, which are common in males and scoliosis is prevalent in women. Female infants have higher survival rate than the same age male infants, and females have a longer lifespan than the male.

Traits are distributed among biologically related people, and those who are not biologically related; these traits are studied using family of related members, twins and adopted… [read more]

How Genetics Affect Child Development Research Paper

Research Paper  |  5 pages (1,598 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


¶ … Genetics affects child development

Genetic research shows that genetic content of a child account for their characteristics and behavior. The environment also plays a vital role in child development. It is increasingly evident that no single fact can explain the intricacies of change and growth from childhood to old age. Environmental and biological factors are almost similar and… [read more]

DNA the Genetics of Height Thesis

Thesis  |  3 pages (903 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 5



The Genetics of Height

DNA has a huge impact in growth and development. It has long been associated with determining height, and recent studies in specific genetic modifications back that assertion up. However, there are other factors influencing height, such as diet and prescribed medications. Additionally, research shows that there is a multitude of other genetic combinations which may have their own impact on each unique individual's height.

Two recent gene abnormalities have been discovered to have an impact on height. Both HGMA2 and GDF5 can impact on height. According to research, about "90% of our height variation is linked to DNA," (Anitei 2007). The discovery of these genes then solidifies this concept. The link within the case of HGMA2 was discovered by a medical team at the Children's Hospital in Boston. Research states that "The team looked inside the genome of 35,000 people for their single letter differences in the DNA that were found more often in tall individuals than in shorter ones," (Anitei 2007). What they found was a simple switch, where a "C" replaced the "T" in the coding. HGMA2 is a mutant gene, with two letters being switched in a previously existing code. Thus, "People who inherit both changes can be a centimeter (a third of an inch) shorter than those who inherit both of the alternative versions of the gene," (Connor 2007). The gene itself is found in young, developing children, showing elements of height being predetermined early on in life. Research has also shown evidence of genetic variations within the GDF5 gene can be correlated with adult height (Vaes et al. 2009). The gene is a controlling cell growth and helps act as a structure for the development of the skeletal system. It has also been known to play a role in the creation joints within the body as well. Unlike HMGA2, GDF5 is found in both young and adult tissues. This shows that height can still be adjusted throughout the development of the growing body.

Additional factors, like diet and medication during vulnerable developmental periods, are also supposed to have an impact in the final height of each individual as they reach maturity. There has been a wide array of studies linking factors like diet, exercise, and location to height. A genetic tie to height "is just the first of many -- and possibly as many as several hundred -- that will be found," (Connor 2007). Thus, it is clear that numerous other factors do play a key role in determining height. Modern research has found that "improved nutrition means that each generation is getting successfully taller," (Connor 2007). Also, on many cases, when some medicines are taken by a developing child, they…… [read more]

Gene Expression Analysis in Cancer Research Paper

Research Paper  |  12 pages (4,084 words)
Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 7


Gene Expression Analysis in Cancer Cells

Perhaps one of the most critical links in cancer research was the discovery that certain cancers have a strong genetic component and that cancer was not simply a random occurrence. As a result, it is now well established that the presence of certain genes can be highly predictive of whether a person will or… [read more]

Transcription Is a Process Term Paper

Term Paper  |  8 pages (3,089 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


The termination complex consists of terminal RNA and mRNA that associate with polypeptide chains that had hydrolyzed

Question 4 There are 64 codons total. Why do you suppose some amino acids have only one or two codons while others have more? What is the wobble?

Genetic redundancy is a condition in which an individual suffers from a condition where a… [read more]

Nature vs. Nurture Chapter Writing

Chapter Writing  |  2 pages (613 words)
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Behaviors breed true in successive generations of organisms.

Behaviors change in response to alterations in biological structures.

Some behaviors run in human families

Behavior has an evolutionary history that persists across species." (McInerney, 2008).

One means of testing this hypothesis would be by conducting a research study. McInerney describes the traditional research strategies used in behavioral genetics, studies of twins and adoptees, techniques that are designed to sort biological from environmental influences (2008). Investigators have also added the search for pieces of DNA associated with particular behaviors.

One twin study reported by Harden, Turkheimer, and Loehlin (2006) found that shared environmental influences were stronger for adolescents from poorer homes, while genetic influences were stronger for more affluent homes. Harden et al. concluded that environmental differences between middle- to upper-class families influence the expression of genetic potential for intelligence (2006). One could argue then, that environmental factors similarly affect the expression of basketball smarts.

The question of how genes influence behavior remains unanswered. What is clear at this point, according to McInerney, is that "No single gene determines a particular behavior. Behaviors are complex traits involving multiple genes that are affected by a variety of other factors" (2008). The respective roles of nature vs. nurture, and their relative importance, remain to be clarified.

Reference List

Harden, K.P., Turkheimer, E. & Loehlin, J.C. (2006). Genotype by Environment Interaction in Adolescents' Cognitive Aptitude. Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 1, doi:10.1007/s10519-006-9113-4

McInerney, J. (2008). What is behavioral genetics? Human Genome Project Information. Retrieved March 30, 2011 from http://www.ornl.gov/sci/techresources/Human_Genome/elsi/behavior.shtml#2

The Nature of Nurture. (2010). Association for Psychological Science. Retrieved March 30, 2011 from http://www.psychologicalscience.org/convention/program_detail.cfm?abstract_id=12506… [read more]

Genetics Study of Biological Information Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (931 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Genetics: Study of Biological Information

Genetics is the branch of biology dealing with heredity and variations of organisms and the genetic makeup and phenomena of an organism, type, group, or condition (Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary, 2010). In this course, it has been defined as "the study of how biological information is stored, utilized, and passed on from one generation to the next."

The biological information is stored within the cells as Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) which is responsible for the coding and reproducing of the cellular information. Proteins, amino acids, and ribonucleic acid are the other main components involved in biological information process.

The life of an organism relies on the cells ability to store, transcribe, and translate the genetic information in the cell.

The genetic material that carries all the hereditary information is the DNA and is found inside the nucleus of the cell. The DNA is a double helical structure whose backbone is composed of sugar-phosphate with nucleotide bases attached. There are four different nucleotide bases: adenine (a), cytosine (C), guanine (G) and thymine (T) plus a fifth one found in RNA: uracil (U) which takes the place of the thymine (T). Only a and T. Or U. can bind together and only C. And G. can bind together. This makes a strand of DNA 'complementary' to the strand being made (Genetics: Elementary human genetics, 2006).

The genetic information is basically instructions for making proteins (Alberts et al., n.d.). The proteins are made up of amino acids. The DNA is unwound in to two strands and the genetic code is transcribed on a strand of RNA; because DNA cannot leave the nucleus of the cell but RNA can leave the nucleus of the cell. The RNA then acts like a messenger delivering the genes sequence and finally translates the code information for the production of the protein. The protein decoded for plays a role in the formation and functions of the cell. The DNA of the cell is the same for all types of cells but the cells have different functions.

DNA is replicated by the use of DNA polymerase enzymes. The rate of error in the reproduction of the DNA strand is 1 in 100 million nucleotides. DNA is the storage of the genetic code but the RNA contains the actual template the protein is formed from. The RNA is broken down into three parts for this process: messenger RNA, transfer RNA, and ribosomal RNA. All forms of RNA cellular components are synthesized by RNA polymerases that are guided by the DNA. The process begins with transcription which precedes the translation. The translation is the synthesis of the proteins from the messenger RNA template. The gene expression of the cell, as known as the gene flow, is:

The hereditary information is passed from parent…… [read more]

Discovery of DNA as Our Heredity Material and Its Structure Essay

Essay  |  2 pages (598 words)
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¶ … Discovery of DNA

On the afternoon of February 28, 1953, British physicist Francis Crick announced in a pub in Cambridge, England, that he and James Watson, an American geneticists, had discovered "the secret of life" on planet Earth, meaning that Crick and Watson had "figured out the structure of DNA" (deoxyribonucleic acid) and that this strange material, known as a double helix, had the capacity to "unzip to make copies of itself," thus confirming many suspicions by other scientists that DNA was the foundation of life's hereditary information (2009, "James Watson & Francis Crick," Internet).

However, Crick and Watson did not discover DNA itself because in 1868, Swiss biologist Friedrich Miescher "carried out the first carefully thought-out chemical studies on the nuclei" of human cells and after obtaining a substance based on phosphorus which he dubbed "nuclein." Miescher also discovered that this substance was acidic and that it contained histones, "a class of proteins responsible for the packaging of DNA" which remained somewhat mysterious until the late 1940's (2009, "The Search for DNA," Internet).

In 1943, some ten years before Watson and Crick unraveled the mysteries of DNA, many biologist and geneticists were convinced that DNA played some type of major role in human inheritance while other argued that such a thing was not possible. Yet the first solid evidence that DNA was the carrier of human genetic information came about at the Rockefeller Institute via research conducted by Oswald Avery, Colin MacLeod and Maclyn McCarthy. These three men came to the conclusion that DNA "carried the genetic message" and that virulent strains of a particular bacterium known as streptococcus pneumonae did indeed contain DNA. Not

surprisingly, many scientists still were not convinced of the genetic properties of DNA (2009, "The Search for DNA," Internet).

In 1952,…… [read more]

Philosophy of Psychology in the Selfish Gene Term Paper

Term Paper  |  7 pages (1,827 words)
Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 2



Dawkins' Selfish Gene and the History of Psychology

In the Selfish Gene, Richard Dawkins argues passionately and clearly for a challenging new approach to the study of biology and evolution. Of course, after thirty years, Dawkins' selfish gene hypothesis, which was a popularization of work being conducted in biology at the time, has become entrenched orthodoxy in some circles.… [read more]

Extracting DNA From Strawberries in My Experiment Lab Report

Lab Report  |  4 pages (1,113 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 2


Extracting DNA from strawberries

In my experiment, I attempted to extract the DNA from strawberries; in order to fulfill my purpose, I have followed the stages presented in the example: I blended the strawberries together with salt and cold water, I put the mixture through a strainer into a cup, then I added liquid detergent and then I moved the liquid into a glass container, after that I added pineapple juice, I stirred and in the end I poured ethyl alcohol. In the end I was able to see the DNA raising to the surface of the container. It looked like a small White Sea jelly.

"Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is a nucleic acid that contains the genetic instructions for the development and function of living organisms. All living things contain DNA, with the exception of some viruses with RNA genomes. The main role of DNA in the cell is the long-term storage of information. It is often compared to a blueprint, since it contains the instructions to construct other components of the cell, such as proteins and RNA molecules. The DNA segments that carry genetic information are called genes."

History: DNA was first discovered Friedrich Miescher, an Austrian monk, who found out in 1869 that human traits are determined by some minimal factors, which he called "nuclein." In 1937, William Astbury was the one who produced the first X-ray diffraction patterns that proved that DNA had a regular structure. "In 1943, Oswald Theodore Avery discovered that traits of the "smooth" form of the Pneumococcus could be transferred to the "rough" form of the same bacteria by mixing killed "smooth" bacteria with the live "rough" form. Avery identified DNA as this transforming principle DNA's role in heredity was confirmed in 1953, when Alfred Hershey and Martha Chase in the Hershey-Chase experiment, showed that DNA is the genetic material of the T2 phage."

However, the first adequate DNA model was produced in 1953 by James D. Watson and Francis Crick, the Watson winning the Nobel Prize 9 years later for his discovery..


nowadays, we highly benefit from these previous discoveries, since the role of the DNA is of valuable importance, since it contains genetic information that lead to living, growing and reproducing of the living organisms. These processes are made possible by the sub-divisions of the DNA, called genes.

DNA is also used in the forensic identification:

it helps finding potential suspects by the evidences from the crime place which contain DNA; reduces the possibility of a wrong crime accusation; identifies the victims of a crime, establishes family relationships, especially paternity.

3. Materials and Methods: Since I have read in the example given that I could extract DNA from anything living, and among the stipulated examples were the strawberries, I decided to use these fruits as material for my experiment. Therefore, I have chosen four medium-sized strawberries and I put them in the blender from my kitchen (I guided myself with the help of the example given for choosing this measurement,… [read more]

Living Things Are Characterized Term Paper

Term Paper  |  12 pages (4,492 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


37) Biotechnology has provided scientists with new means to understand the complexity of protein functions. Molecular cloning, an important tool in biotechnology, has vastly improved the prospects of understanding individual proteins and their functions. Microarray technology is another tool, which allows the study of a group of genes in combination. Similarly, Antisense and RNA interference (gene blocking) and gene knockouts… [read more]

Human DNA Sequence Composed Term Paper

Term Paper  |  4 pages (1,160 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


These two databases are available for search. To search a sequence against eBLOCKs, please enter your protein sequence in FASTA format and choose either eMOTIF or eMATRIX as your Search Method." (Stanford.edu, 2005)

DNA Sequence

The results of the internet search for this specific DNA sequence came back with a great deal of information which then required additional research. The results identified a serine protease better known as enterokinase or PRSS7. Enterokinase is an intestinal enzyme that helps the body initiate activation of pancreatic proteolytic proenzymes. "Enterokinase is a serine protease of the duodenal brush border membrane that cleaves trypsinogen and produces active trypsin, thereby leading to the activation of many pancreatic digestive enzymes. Overlapping cDNA clones that encode the complete human enterokinase amino acid sequence were isolated from a human intestine cDNA library." (Kitamoto et al., 1995) Dr. Kitamoto also points out that these structural features are conserved among human, bovine, and porcine enterokinase and that they can be detected only in small intestine.

Chromosome 21 has been identified as the smallest human autosome. "The enterokinase gene was localized to human chromosome 21q21 by fluorescence in situ hybridization." (Kitamoto et al., 1995) Researchers have concluded that Human chromosome 21 is of great importance to the medical research community because there are such a large number of genetic or familial disorders that can be mapped to this chromosome. Although many of these do not pertain directly to the enterokinase gene, chromosome 21 in general have been tied to Down syndrome, five percent of familial amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or motor neuron disease) and even Alzheimer's disease. The chromosomal translocations have also been tied to cancers like Ewing's sarcoma and acute myeloid leukemia.

This serine protease is a part of the intestinal brush border in the small intestine. "Congenital enteropeptidase deficiency is a rare recessively inherited disorder leading, in affected infants, to severe failure to thrive. The genomic structure of the proenteropeptidase gene (25 exons, total gene size 88 kb) was characterized in order to perform DNA sequencing in three clinically and biochemically proved patients with congenital enteropeptidase deficiency who were from two families." (Holzinger et al., 2002) Dr. Holzinger noted that defective alleles provided first evidence that proenteropeptidase-gene mutations are the primary cause of congenital enteropeptidase deficiency.

(UWCM, 2005)

Obviously, enterokinase gene being tied to this chromosome entails a great deal of research interest into the biological functions of the gene and the manner by which it contributes to disease. Defects in PRSS7 therefore are a direct cause of enterokinase deficiency which is a life-threatening intestinal malabsorption disorder. The disorder can be characterized by severe bouts of diarrhea and failure to thrive and thus create a situation of initiating activation of pancreatic proteolytic proenzymes (trypsin, chymotrypsin and carboxypeptidase a).

Animals, like humans, have to handle digestion of exogenous macromolecules without destroying endogenous constituents so the serine protease or enterokinase seems to be a fundamental digestive system requirement. In other words, all vertebrates such as mice or dogs have adapted a two… [read more]

Breast Cancer How Genes Influence Research Paper

Research Paper  |  6 pages (2,352 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 5


Because of that, the -656 G. allele has the potential to harbor a "higher production" of APE1 (Kang, 100). That would create the biological plausibility that APE1- 656TG/GG genotypes are then expected to be associated with a lower breast cancer risk (Kang, 100). Kang found that -656 T>G polymorphism was associated with a risk of breast cancer on a significantly… [read more]

Positive and Negative Impacts Essay

Essay  |  7 pages (2,243 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


(Surhan, 2002)

It is quite evident that genetic engineering has various pros and cons. We should be careful that the moral issues related to the genetic engineering shall be given more priority rather than the constructive and economic issues. The developed countries should also try to have a control on the activities of this field so that they might not… [read more]

Biotechnology the Origins Essay

Essay  |  2 pages (675 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


" (Torrey, 1922, p.72) For instance, Mendel cross-bred two pea plants, each with two sets of traits: yellow or green color and a smooth or wrinkled surface.

From these humble beginnings, a distinct discipline of biotechnology has developed which specifically deals with the mechanisms of heredity: genetics. This development has come about primarily through the use of fermentation as an industrial mechanism. The need for a better and more efficient fermentation process led to experimentation and the introduction of industrialized biotechnology. And the use of biological agents in industry then "let to formulations of an ideal for biotechnology that has lasted to the present day, having been co-opted as the new possibilities for recombinant DNA technology came to be voiced in the late 1970's." (Hessenbruch, 2000, p.85) But the most impressive result that has developed from the work of Gregor Mendel, beside the birth of genetics and the discovery of DNA, has been the Human Genome Project (HGP). The goal of the HGP has been to use the latest DNA technology to map the entire human genome, or all of the genes that constitute human DNA. As a result of years of work, the HGP has successfully identified all of the 20 to 25 thousand genes that make up human DNA, and now uses this information for research, analysis, as well as the development of new technologies. DNA technology is only one aspect of biotechnology, but it was one of the first applications to be used by humans; even before it was fully understood. And since the work of scientists and researchers like Gregor Mendel, the study of heredity has evolved into the study of genetics, which has spawned the development of a specific branch of biotechnology called DNA technology.


Bateson, William. (1913). Mendel's Principles of Heredity. London: Cambridge UP.


Hessenbruch, Arne. (2000). Reader's Guide to the History of Science. Chicago, IL:

Fitzroy Dearborn. Print.

Pierce, Benjamin. (2012). Genetics: A Conceptual Approach. New York: W.H. Freeman.


Torrey, Ray Ethan. (1922). The Anatomy and Physiology…… [read more]

Gene Therapy Term Paper

Term Paper  |  4 pages (1,649 words)
Bibliography Sources: 5


Gene Therapy

The concept of gene therapy first emerged in 1972 when the scientists were too cautious about the insertion of a foreign gene in the genomics of an individual. The use of genes for the treatment of medical conditions is known as gene therapy. The main pharmaceutical agent being used in this case is the DNA. The main principle… [read more]

Role of Genetics on Development Essay

Essay  |  4 pages (1,228 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3



What Parents Do Not Intend to Give their Children

When individuals think about what they would like to pass on to their children, they often think of intangible traits such as personal courage or artistic talent. Such attributes no doubt have a genetic or inherited element (because all traits that a human has can arguably be said to have a genetic element), but these are traits that are in large measure learned, although many of them may well be learned from family members to whom an individual is genetically related. Parents may also think about passing on traits that are clearly genetically based, such as a dimple in the chin or curly hair.

However, one of the things that parents may not consider in terms of their contributions to their children is their potential to harm those children in an entirely unintentional way: That is, parents may harm their children all unwillingly by passing along to them a combination of chromosomes that together can cause lifelong problems for their children. This paper examines one of the lesser-known genetic conditions that can occur in an individual who receives a particular genetic contribution from each of his parents and how this condition of Klinefelter's syndrome results from a different general mechanism that occurs in better known and more serious genetic conditions such as hemophilia (Klinefelter syndrome, 2007).

Human genetics is both immensely complex and very simple. The simple part is that each person inherits half of his genetic information from his mother and half from his father. (Masculine pronouns are used throughout this paper because, while of course genetic dynamics work in females as well as in males, the condition being examined here occurs only in males.) Understanding how the genetic material of parent generations affects those of their children is simple in its general outline as it is complex in the repercussions that the parental genetic contribution has on a child.

Most of the well-known genetic diseases (although it is probably more accurate to call them 'conditions' rather than 'diseases' since they cannot be caught from another person or from the environment but must inherit them) result when parents each have a single gene that, when combined with a copy of that gene from the other parent, causes a condition to move from potential to expressed. One can use the condition of hemophilia to explain how this works. If a mother has only one of the genes that an individual must have to have hemophilia, then she herself will not be a hemophiliac but rather will be a "carrier" -- an individual who carries to future generations the genetic possibility of the disease (Klinefelter syndrome, 2007).

The same is true for the paternal set of genes: A father can be a "carrier" of genetic diseases, but so long as he has only half but not a full complement of the genetic coding for hemophilia. He will not himself be a hemophiliac but his children can be -- if their mother… [read more]

Discovery of the Structure of DNA by Watson and Crick Research Paper

Research Paper  |  5 pages (1,672 words)
Bibliography Sources: 5


Discovery of the Structure of DNA by Watson and Crick

Arguably, one of the greatest discoveries of human kind has been DNA. This is because its structure holds the key to human evolution, as it is the basic foundation for how all life is created. Simply put, deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is a double helix formation that contains the elements of:… [read more]

Genetics and Human Disease Research Proposal

Research Proposal  |  2 pages (580 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 8


Genetics and Human Disease

Millions of Americans a year have to deal with the affects of heart disease and cancer, both directly and indirectly. They prove to be the biggest threats to the average American in terms of medical dangers. What is largely un-thought of within the context of previous research on such threats is the concept of their relationship to the most basic fundamental blocks of our bodies -- genomes within DNA. Recent studies have found that there may be a potential genetic relationship between the human genome and medical conditions such as heart disease and cancer; these diseases not having any similarities between typical genetic diseases caused by abnormal genes.

Each and every one of us owes our biological make up to the human genome which determines so much of who we all are. Twenty-three pairs of chromosomes are encapsulated within each genome, which then induce the development of our physical and mental existence. These chromosomes are strands of DNA molecules and proteins which carry genetic and hereditary information of each individual. Only one pair of these chromosomes are what determines an individuals sex, the major difference between humans and are known as non-autosomal chromosomes. These are represented by the X and Y chromosomes which determine sex in an individual. Out of these twenty-three pairs of chromosomes, twenty two are what is known as autosomal chromosome pairs. These chromosomes appear the same in both male and female, and help determine such traits as race, ethnicity, and ancestry.

It is these chromosomes which also carry genetic diseases through the various generations.

Yet, not all diseases and disorders carried down through autosomal chromosomes are caused by abnormalities in the genes themselves. Several other diseases have been related to human genomes,…… [read more]

DNA or Deoxyribonucleic Acid Thesis

Thesis  |  3 pages (1,004 words)
Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 3


DNA or deoxyribonucleic acid is the only commonly found molecule that can dictate its own syntheses through reproduction, for this reason the DNA is the cell structure that dictates genetic material to a new organism. (Carter, 2004, NP) the shape and form of DNA create the ability of it to regenerate in patterned sequences, that are limitedly predictable and there fore result in a new genetic identity, with many of the existing organism's characteristics and some from a new organism, also supplying DNA to the process.

DNA forms as a double helix with the outer and inner edges forming alternating ladders and rungs that determine the function of the DNA at given periods of reproduction, through the chemical representation of cell formation:

The outer edges are formed of alternating ribose sugar molecules and phosphate groups. The two strands go in opposite directions (1 "up" and 1 "down"). The nitrogenous bases are "inside" like rungs on a ladder. Adenine on one side pairs with thymine (uracil in RNA) on the other by hydrogen bonding, and cytosine pairs with guanine. Note that the C-G pair has three hydrogen bonds while the a-T pair has only two, which keeps them from pairing wrong. This dictates side-to-side pairing, but says nothing about the order along the molecule. Watson and Crick said this variability along the molecule can account for the variety in the genetic code. Their model also accounts for how DNA can replicate itself. They said the molecule "unzips" and new matching bases are added in to create two new molecules. They called this semiconservative replication because each new molecule has one "old" and one "new" strand of DNA. (Carter, 2004, NP)

As a result of this DNA replication process it serves as the main road map for the development of new cells with both old and new characteristics.

DNA codes for protein synthesis by first coding for RNA. First, the DNA code is transcribed to RNA code, which is still in the "language" of nitrogenous bases, except that adenine on the DNA pairs with uracil (in place of thymine) on the RNA. The RNA code is then translated to protein code, which is a different "language." This process involves ribosomes and two kinds of RNA: mRNA and tRNA. The mRNA codes for the gene in question and is copied off the DNA, while tRNA matches a specific group of nucleotides with a specific amino acid. A "unit" of three nucleotides on the tRNA codes for one amino acid. Each of these "units" is called an anticodon. These match up with corresponding three-nucleotide sequences on the mRNA called codons, and in this manner the amino acids are organized into the correct sequence to build a protein. The ribosome works with the mRNA and tRNA to hook the amino acids together to form a protein. (Carter, 2004, NP)

The replication structure of DNA serves as a basis for inheritance through the development of meiosis which allows gene pairs to form into a new organism,… [read more]

DNA in Science, Evidence Is Necessary Term Paper

Term Paper  |  1 pages (475 words)
Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 1



In science, evidence is necessary to prove or disprove a hypothesis. Evidence suggests DNA is the molecule of heredity. In your response, list the scientists and the work they did to convince science and society that DNA is indeed the molecule of heredity. Next, list the evidence that would convince you that DNA is the molecule of heredity. Finally, reflect on why learning about the history and science of DNA is important in learning that DNA is the molecule of heredity.

Although James D. Watson and Francis H. Crick are credited with 'discovering' DNA, the concept of heritable traits can be traced back to the monk Gregor Mendel, who first noticed regressive and dominant characteristics in the fertilization of different plants. Watson and Crick 'only' discovered DNA's double helix structure, and by the time they conducted their experiments in DNA structure, the idea that nucleic acid contained the blueprint of humanity was already widely accepted.

To a person uneducated in the scientific method, the idea of invisible substances like DNA transmitting genetic information would seem difficult to prove, as the evidence exists on the molecular level. Without the benefits of modern technology, the idea of heritable traits could not be connected to a specific, heritable entity within living beings. It was in 1943 that an American named Oswald Avery proved the hypothesis that nucleic acid, or DNA carried genetic information. "Earlier in this century, as biologists…… [read more]

Heredity and Hormones Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (876 words)
Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 3


Hormones and Heredity


Human behavior has been an interesting subject of discussion and research. It is commonly believed that genes and environment determine human behavior. We need to not forget that genes are precisely what we call hereditary in ordinary language. When we are that someone is hereditarily prone to doing a certain thing, what we mean is that his genetic makeup makes his susceptible to such an action. There are certain characteristics or personality traits that human beings inherit and thus we blame these on genes. There are other actions that we learn from environment. According to various researches, genetics or hereditary is a very weak source or cause of behavior. While some person may have an aggression gene or a gene for certain behavior trait, it is highly unlikely that this gene alone would make him vulnerable to aggression or would predispose him to that particular behavior. Normally there are other factors that influence a person's behavior too. Environment is a strong contender in this connection. However in this paper, we shall also study the effect on hormones on human behavior.

While environment and hereditary are important sources of determining human behavior, hormones also have a marked influence on our physical and mental state thus altering our behavior at least for some time. When we see wrestlers in the ring, thrashing their opponent or Formula One competitors driving at alarming speed, we wonder how do they do it. It doesn't even look humanly possible. But they do it with absolute ease and this is where hormones come into the equation. The production of adrenalin is what takes a person from a restive state to an excited state and causes him to behave in an agitated, excited manner as if he is in a state of acute awareness. Hormones are commonly seen as chemicals that are secreted by certain cells and they move to another to affect bodily and mental state thus affecting behavior. The main function of hormones is to keep the body in a perfect chemical state. This means that hormones are secreted, as the body requires them. How would it be if a person were unavailable to feel any excitement on seeing his partner? This would not be a normal reaction and it shows a marked disinterest in the mate. But that not so normal behavior has other psychological reasons and thus the lack of hormone production.

However chemically speaking, it was the lack of adrenalin that caused a person to behave in an unexcited manner. For this reason, hormones are considered responsible for normal human reaction. "Hormones are…… [read more]

DNA Is the Abbreviation Term Paper

Term Paper  |  4 pages (1,041 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Through the years, scientists have learned that the normally fragile DNA molecule can exist for hundreds, thousands and even millions of years in "certain extraordinary preserved specimens" (Poinar Pp). The sophisticated tools of molecular biology, used most often to foretell an organism's genetic future, can also be used to decipher an organism's past (Poinar Pp). Today, scientists are "exploiting the techniques of gene amplification and sequencing to decipher biological events that took place in the very distant past' (Poinar Pp). Reading the ancient history encoded in DNA from people, animals and plants, allows researchers to "fill in missing links on phylogenetic trees or to identify the remains of organisms long extinct" (Poinar Pp).

The study of DNA damage and repair was initiated and has continued to be conducted for many years by scientists interested in the effects of radiation on biological systems (Sancar Pp). As a result, these topics have been only of peripheral interest to the majority of biological scientists interested in replication, transcription, gene regulation, and cell cycle (Sancar Pp). In fact, DNA damage and repair occur under physiological conditions as part of normal cellular events, therefore, "even a reductionist description of cellular processes must necessarily encompass DNA repair" (Sancar Pp). In recent years, an important conceptual breakthrough in molecular biology has been the realization of the intimate interconnections between basic cellular reactions, cell cycle, replication, transcription, recombination, repair, previously believed to function more or less independently (Sancar Pp). Such an integrative approach is expected to lead to a better understanding of the cell and the organism, which in turn would help in "designing better approaches to cancer treatment and may even help with our long-standing quest for slowing the aging process" (Sancar Pp).

DNA mismatch repair, MMR, guards the integrity of the genome in virtually all cells and contributes roughly 1000-fold to the overall fidelity of replication and targets mispaired bases that arise from replication errors, "during homologous recombination, and as a result of DNA damage" (Hsieh Pp). Cells that are deficient in MMR have a mutator phenotype in which the rate of spontaneous mutation is greatly elevated, and frequently "exhibit microsatellite instability at mono- and dinucleotide repeats" (Hsieh Pp). In addition to its role in postreplication repair, the MMR machinery serves to police homologous recombination events and acts as a barrier to genetic exchange between species (Hsieh Pp). Perhaps the most exciting prospect is that efforts to understand molecular mechanisms of MMR will reveal the inner workings of many fundamental and conserved biological processes (Hsieh Pp).

The molecular biology revolution of the last few decades has reached into every conceivable corner of biological investigation (Poinar Pp). As DNA research continues, the keys to unlocking the mysteries of disease and aging will surely be revealed, thus ensuring a better quality of life for future generations.

Work Cited

"DNA." The Hutchinson Dictionary of Science. Helicon Publishing Ltd. 1998; Pp.

Poinar Jr., George. "Ancient DNA." American Scientist; 9/1/1999; Pp.

Sancar, Aziz. "DNA repair in humans." Annual Review of Genetics;… [read more]

Genetics Option 3: Darwin's Perspective Term Paper

Term Paper  |  4 pages (1,309 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


Indeed, as genetic diseases become curable or at least controllable more children with potential diseases can be helped and placed in homes.

Certainly many issues and concerns need to be taken into consideration in the field of genetics. And definitely it is not an exact science. But few things are. When the intricacies of medical technology and indeed all technology are considered, few things are a certainty. Yet the basis of knowledge that human beings have accumulated over only the last century is staggering. This basis of knowledge is the result of thousands of years of evolution, starting with the first spark of fire. Ethical considerations, while having its place, should therefore be used as a guideline rather than a detriment to genetic science. On the other hand, scientists should be willing to make public any knowledge that would benefit humankind, and furthermore such knowledge should not be monopolized only by the rich and the powerful (Martone).

The science of genetics, in other words, should be applied with responsibility. The choice of responsibility towards not only its own species, but also towards others, is also a uniquely human quality. It has been suggested by Kolata that the animal and natural environment can benefit from genetic technology. But will human beings choose to do this if it means a significant investment in time and money, the benefits of which will not be immediately apparent? According to Martone, the rich and powerful are already working on monopolizing the genetic engineering industry to benefit themselves only.

This is where responsibility becomes a prominent issue. If "survival" of the species rather than the rich and powerful elitist individual is truly the concern, the responsibility lies with human beings to ensure that not only the species, but also its means of survival prevails. This includes all aspects of the environment in terms of food and energy resources. Genetic engineering thus offers much in terms of survival, but the opportunity must be used correctly.

This responsibility then touches upon a more basic field than ethics or religion. All scientific fields can and should work together in order to use their newly acquired tools correctly. Oceanographers and environmentalists can identify genetic needs that genetic engineers can fulfill. Funding organizations can work to fund research programs. Knowledge about all these issues should be made publicly available to ensure that all human beings realize what is at stake. Even ethicists can have their place in using genetic science. Potential ethical difficulties can be pinpointed by these people, and these can be dealt with before they become crises.

Perhaps the above is a somewhat idealistic view of things. Human beings by nature will always disagree on everything from politics to religion to where to go for lunch. The point is that human beings will always advance maybe to some degree despite themselves. However it is used, genetics is an evolutionary advancement to help human beings survive. How human beings choose to use this new survival skill will determine the longevity… [read more]

DNA Fingerprinting Research Paper

Research Paper  |  5 pages (1,748 words)
Bibliography Sources: 10


" Journal Of

Scandinavian Studies In Criminology & Crime Prevention 13.1 (2012): 3-

21. Academic Search Premier. Web. 14 Oct. 2014.

Ai, Bingjie, et al. "The Elimination Of DNA From The Cry Toxin-DNA Complex Is A

Necessary Step In The Mode Of Action Of The Cry8 Toxin." Plos One 8.12

(2013): e81335. MEDLINE. Web. 14 Oct. 2014.

Butler, John M. Forensic DNA Typing: Biology, Technology, And Genetics Of STR

Markers. Amsterdam: Elsevier Academic Press, 2005. eBook Academic

Collection (EBSCOhost). Web. 14 Oct. 2014.

Dietrich, Dimo, et al. "Improved PCR Performance Using Template DNA From Formalin-

Fixed And Paraffin-Embedded Tissues By Overcoming PCR Inhibition." Plos

One 8.10 (2013): e77771. MEDLINE. Web. 14 Oct. 2014.

"DNA Fingerprinting." Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia (2014): 1p. 1. Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia. Web. 14 Oct. 2014.

Ghanim, Motasem Hilmi, et al. "Low Electric Field DNA Separation And In-Channel

Amperometric Detection By Microchip Capillary Electrophoresis." IET

Nanobiotechnology / IET 8.2 (2014): 77-82. MEDLINE. Web. 14 Oct. 2014.

Gorman, Bridget K, and Meredith Chu. "Racial And Ethnic Differences In Adult Asthma

Prevalence, Problems, And Medical Care." Ethnicity & Health 14.5 (2009): 527-

552. MEDLINE. Web. 14 Oct. 2014.

Kaye, David H. "Why So Contrived? Fourth Amendment Balancing, Per Se Rules, And

DNA Databases After Maryland V. King." Journal Of Criminal Law & Criminology 104.3 (2014): 535-595. Academic Search Premier. Web. 14 Oct.


Scherr, Albert E. "Genetic Privacy & The Fourth Amendment: Unregulated Surreptitious

DNA Harvesting." Georgia Law Review 47.2…… [read more]

DNA the Emergence Research Paper

Research Paper  |  3 pages (1,013 words)
Bibliography Sources: 6


It is now possible to perform DNA testing with a very small sample, something that was not possible when the technique rose to prominence in the forensic business. The legality of the testing being a state issue, the environment for it is quite complex. Prisoners need to understand their state laws -- some prisoners would at this point have no access to DNA testing that could exonerate them. However, by identifying that the person who has been convicted was not the person who was at the crime, it is possible to exonerate people who have been wrongly convicted, and therefore to have the conviction overturned.

2. It is not possible to determine how successful this is compared with the number of cases. The important number of cases here is the number of people who have been wrongly convicted -- that is the denominator when considering the success rate. How many wrongful convictions are discovered is a function of how many there were in the first place, not a function of the testing. If there were no wrongful convictions, the testing would find nothing even if the test was 100% effective. So the reality is there is "success rate" that can be determined because the denominator is unknown.

What is known is that dozens of people have been exonerated through the use of post-conviction DNA testing. There are more such cases that the general public perhaps realizes, and the fact that there were 17 cases on death row should be enough to give anybody pause for thought.

The success of DNA testing in exoneration therefore needs to be considered in non-numerical terms. Success would have to be measured in the number of jurisdictions who allow this procedure. This would bring about validation of post-conviction DNA testing, and the right of prisoners to seek exoneration. While 49 states allow for post-conviction DNA testing, many place limits on the practice. Statutes of limitations in particular present a barrier to those who were convicted years ago. Yet it is those convicts who would benefit the most from the technique.

Thus, while there have been some successes with gaining recognition for the value of post-conviction DNA testing, there is still work to be done with respect to ensuring the use of the technique. Exoneration is something that should have no statute of limitations, as those would only reduce the ability of those wrongfully convicted to seek justice and remedy.

Works Cited:

ACLU. (2011). DNA testing and the death penalty. American Civil Liberties Union. Retrieved April 27, 2013 from http://www.aclu.org/capital-punishment/dna-testing-and-death-penalty

Lithwick, D. (2012). The exoneration of Bennett Barbour. Slate Magazine. Retrieved April 27, 2013 from http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/jurisprudence/2012/03/bennett_barbour_exonerated_of_rape_in_virginia_how_the_state_is_botching_the_dna_retesting_and_notification_of_old_cases.html

Mears, B. (2013). DNA tests after arrest? Some justices not so sure. CNN. Retrieved April 27, 2013 from http://edition.cnn.com/2013/02/26/justice/supreme-court-dna

Michaels, M. (2012). 33 convicted of sex crimes could be exonerated by Virginia DNA project. Mint Press News. Retrieved April 27, 2013 from http://www.mintpressnews.com/33-convicted-of-sex-crimes-could-be-exonerated-by-virginia-dna-project/… [read more]

Authors Address Jacobsen Syndrome, Which Is Related Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (819 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0


¶ … authors address Jacobsen syndrome, which is related to terminal deletion of 11q chromosome, usually occurring do novo. It is a rare congenital disorder. Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome is also mentioned. Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome occurs due to duplication of the paternal allele of 11p15. These are pediatric areas of genetic research, demonstrating the ways chromosomal abnormalities are not necessarily genetically inherited, how they evolve de novo, and how they express themselves at birth. Moreover, the article addresses various diagnostic procedures, including a multitude of chromosomal testing methods for identification of the disease in infants.

The article addresses the methods by which the deletion of the genetic material takes place; that is, breaks at the long end at 11q23.3 -- in "expanded CCG-trinucleotide repeats within the folate sensitive fragile site FRA11b," (962). The trinucleotide repeats can cause increased chromosomal instabilities and eventual terminal deletion of 11q. Complex rearrangements of the chromosomes may not always be identifiable using the most routine methods of testing.

Identify the broad goals of the research described in the article.

The primary goal of the research is to encourage routine testing of Jacobsen syndrome via the use of available technologies and procedures including Array-CGH, FISH, and SKY. Conventional chromosomal analysis can usually identify the absence of the 11q and possible presence of Jacobsen syndrome. Secondary goals include pinpointing the breakpoints that occur in the chromosome. Tertiary goals include urging future research into Jacobsen syndrome in order to reveal the specific mechanisms of the genes on chromosome 11 area q.

Explain the genetic concept tested in the study and how it is tested.

The overall genetic concept tested is prenatal and perinatal chromosomal rearrangement. This is a case study experimental research design. The researchers work with an infant male, born premature (born in the 32+5-week of pregnancy) to two healthy parents. The infant was admitted to hospital for respiratory problems and the subsequent clinical examination revealed several symptoms including organ system impairment, facial dysmorphia, and partial agenesis of the corpus callosum. Chromosome analysis was conducted, via culturing. Moreover, the fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) method of analysis was also used on fifteen metaphases. Spectral Karyotyping (SKY) analysis, comparative genomic hybridization (CGH), and array CGH were also used during the diagnostic procedures. It was found that the critical region of 11q was lost, confirming Jacobsen syndrome. The researchers also postulate the presence of Beckwith-Wiedemann syndrome due primarily to the fact that the infant in the case study was large in…… [read more]

Gene Therapy Treatment in Sickle Cell Disease Annotated Bibliography

Annotated Bibliography  |  4 pages (1,128 words)
Bibliography Sources: 7


Sickle Gene

Gene Therapies for Sickle Cell Anemia: Annotated Bibliography

Kohn, D. & Candotti, F. (2009). Gene therapy fulfilling its promise. NEJM 360(5): 518-21. This brief and relatively broad review details a diversity of the advances that have been made in gene therapy since techniques first began to emerge in the latter half of the twentieth century. A wide variety of different disorders and diseases have been treated and relived if not put into full remission/disappearance through the use of gene therapies, and though such therapies are not the magic bullet that the public often sees them as they do represent a more effective means of addressing many diseases than has been heretofore available. The author focuses on emerging treatments for X-linked SCID

Lucarelli G., Gaziev, J., Isgro, a., Sodani, P…. & Andreani, M. (2012). Allogeneic cellular gene therapy in hemoglobinopathies -- evaluation of hematopoietic SCT in sickle cell anemia. Bone Marrow Transplantation 47: 227-30.

This study examined eleven patients suffering from sickle cell anemia and tracked their progress following treatment with stem cell transplantation from an HLA-identical and related donor. One patient in the study died a year following the transplantation, however the remaining ten patients were still free of any sickle cell anemia symptoms five years following the transplantation. This research confirms that stem cell transplantation from suitable HLA-identical donors is a promising therapy that provides an excellent survival rate and the ability for patients to lead sickle cell-free lives.

Morstyn, G. & Sheridan, W. (2006). Cell Therapy. New York: Cambridge University Press.

This textbook contains broad yet advanced descriptions of stem cell and certain other genetic therapy techniques that developed in the last several decade providing a state-of-the-art glimpse into certain practices and capabilities. The authors do not have a specific perspective or viewpoint that they attempt to assert nor do they engage in any primary research themselves, but instead they provide an overview of the science of cell therapy and many of its specific incarnations. While not directly related to sickle cell anemia (at least not wholly so), the information this source contains on cell therapies is highly relevant and useful for foundational knowledge.

Papanikolaou, E. & Anagnou, N. (2010). Major Challenges for Gene Therapy of Thalassemia and Sickle Cell Disease. Current Gene Therapy 10(5): 404-12. Retroviral vectors have been postulated as potentially useful agents in certain gene therapies, yet a variety of problems exist in their use that have hindered research and practical applications. Inefficient gene transfer times and capabilities are noted as especially problematic in retroviral vector use, and these researchers explore other potential vectors noting the specific opportunities and risks or problems of each of the alternatives they identify. No recommendations for specific therapeutic applications are made, however an abundance of theoretical and research-applicable information is provided that makes the study quite worthwhile.

Ray, a., Pearlman, M., Vats, T. & Khatua, S. (2011). Development of ependymoma following allogeneic cord blood transplantation in a sickle cell patient. Neuro-Oncology 13(3): 95-101.

This case study examines… [read more]

Plasmids "Construction of the Mobilizable Article Review

Article Review  |  3 pages (853 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


"This plasmid has all the genes of its parental pMV158 and harbors the gfp gene under the control of the Pm inducible promoter." (Nieto, 2003, p. 283) In other words, this plasmid is the pMV158 plasmid but with a gfp gene under to the control of maltose inserted into it.

With the pMV158gfp plasmid created, the authors then had to test whether or not this plasmid had the ability to transfer between bacteria, or mobilize, and at what frequency, if any, this occurred. The plasmid pMV158 had previously been mobilized between pneumococcal and lactococcal strains of bacteria by means of incorporation into a separate auxiliary plasmid. The authors needed to use such an auxiliary plasmid to test whether their pMV158gfp plasmid could be transferred between three different species of Gram-positive bacteria: S. pneumoniae, L. lactis, and E. faecalis. They used pAM?1 as their auxiliary plasmid with the pMV158 and their pMV158gfp used as the replicons to be transferred. Nieto and Espinosa then used a newly developed mobilzation assay "based on the nutritional differences between pneumococcal and lactococcal" to select for transconjugants, or bacteria that have incorporated the new DNA into their cells. (Nieto 2003, p. 283) And by growing the bacteria in maltose, fluorescence could be used to test for the incorporation of the plasmids. According to the authors, all three strains of bacteria showed a measurable fluorescence "although cells of E. faecalis/pMV158GFP exhibited such a high level of fluorescence that the color was appreciable when colonies were illuminated with an UV lamp." (Nieto, 2003, p. 284)

With the creation of pMV158GFP a new tool has been developed that can be used to observe the processes of bacteria, especially infectious bacteria. And since its development, pMV158GFP has been transferred to more that a dozen species of bacteria. It has also been used to develop a test for the "colonization and persistence of lactic acid bacteria in dairy products," using fluorescence as an indicator during the production of cheese. (Nieto, 2003, p. 285) And with a plasmid that can be mobilize between bacteria containing the fluorescence marker gfp, the future application of this tool is almost limitless when investigating the processes of bacteria.


Nieto, Concepcion, and Manuel Espinoza. (2003). Construction of the mobilizable plasmid pMV158GFP, a derivative of pMV158 that carries the gene encoding the green fluorescent protein. Plasmid 49: 281-285.… [read more]

Huge Cancer Epidemiology Huge Study Term Paper

Term Paper  |  13 pages (3,706 words)
Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 10


When reported, the adjusted effect estimate was included in the analysis in preference to the unadjusted one. If odds ratios were not reported, we computed unadjusted odds ratios from the data presented. Analyses were conducted by using Stata statistical software, release 7.0 (189). Heterogeneity was assessed by the Q test, with a fixed-effects model used if p ? 0.1 and… [read more]

PCR Gapdh Genes Parsley Capstone Project

Capstone Project  |  5 pages (1,528 words)
Bibliography Sources: 10


In contrast, the plastids of many other algae, such as dinoflagellates, diatoms and euglenids, are usually bound by more than two membranes, suggesting that these were acquired indirectly via endosymbiotic mergers between nonphotosynthetic eukaryotic hosts and eukaryotic algal endosymbionts. An increasing amount of PCR analysis of GAPDH genes from diverse photosynthetic taxa has made it possible to test specific hypotheses about the evolution of photosynthesis in eukaryotes and, consequently, improve our understanding of the genomic and biochemical diversity of modern-day eukaryotic phototrophs (Kim and Archibald, 2009).

Works Cited

Kim, E. And Archibald, J. (2009) Diversity and Evolution of Plastids and Their Genomes. Plant Cell Monograph. 1-39.

Lopez-Juez, E. 2007. Plastid biogenesis, between light and shadows. J. Exper. Bot. 58: 11 -- 26.

Martin, W., Rujan, T., Richly, E., Hansen, A., Cornelsen, S., Lins, T., Leister, D., Stoebe, B., Hasegawa, M, & Penny, D. 2002. Evolutionary analysis of Arabidopsis, cyanobacterial, and chloroplast genomes reveals plastic phylogeny and thousands of cyanobacterial genes in the nucleus. PNAS 99: 12246 -- 12251.

Plaxton, W.C. 1996. The organization and regulation of plant glycolysis. Annu. Rev. PlantPhysiol. Plant Mol. Biol. 47: 185 -- 214.

Sirover, M.A. 1999. New insights into an old protein: the functional diversity of mammalian glyceraldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenase. Bioch. Biophys. Acta…… [read more]

Genetics Case Study

Case Study  |  9 pages (2,558 words)
Bibliography Sources: 9


Whereas genetic testing performed in a clinical diagnostic laboratory is subject to strict quality control criteria including results that are available in a timely fashion, this often is different for research gene testing, and reports of results may be obtained after months to years or even never. Details of these differences need to be thoroughly explained to the patient before… [read more]

Virtual PCR and DNA Sequencing Experiment Lab Report

Lab Report  |  2 pages (758 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


PCR-DNA Experiment

Abstract- Science and Biology have not been the same since the discovery and subsequent research on the mechanisms of DNA, the gene, and the way that chemicals combine to form traits. Numerous projects have stemmed from the original work, among which the Human Genome Project is possibly the most famous. For our purposes, using a virtual laboratory simulation, DNA samples were extracted and amplified for analysis. Computer analysis found the samples to be pure enough to allow for a strong statistical probability that they were Bartonella henselae, a common animal vector bacterial transfer.

Introduction- DNA, or deoxyribonucleic acid, is a fascinating modern subject that has implications far beyond science and technology. Since 1953, when the double helix was discovered by James Watson and Francis Crick, science has never been the same. In fact, Crick is known to have remarked shortly after they confirmed their findings, "We have found the secret of life!" (Nobel). DNA is a nucleic acid that contains the genetic instructions used in the development and functioning of all known living organisms and some viruses. The main role of DNA molecules is the long-term storage of information. DNA is often compared to a set of blueprints or a recipe, or a code, since it contains the instructions needed to construct other components of cells, such as proteins and RNA molecules. The DNA segments that carry this genetic information are called genes, but other DNA sequences have structural purposes, or are involved in regulating the use of this genetic information. Chemically, DNA consists of two long polymers of simple units called nucleotides, with backbones made of sugars and phosphate groups joined by ester bonds. These two strands run in opposite directions to each other and are therefore anti-parallel. Attached to each sugar is one of four types of molecules called bases. It is the sequence of these four bases along the backbone that encodes information. This information is read using the genetic code, which specifies the sequence of the amino acids within proteins. The code is read by copying stretches of DNA into the related nucleic acid RNA, in a process called transcription (Walker and Jones).

Materials and Methods - In this simulation, all laboratory materials were virtual, but the technique and methods were appropriate techniques…… [read more]

PCR and DNA Sequencing Experiment Lab Report

Lab Report  |  2 pages (827 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


PCR and DNA Sequencing Experiment

PCR and DNA Sequencing

PCR and DNA sequencing were used to identify a bacterium isolated from a patient. The bacterium was determined to be Bartonella henselae. B. henselae is associated with cat scratch disease (CSD) and is transmitted to humans via cats.

Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) has been used to amplify segments of DNA for many years. It is a very useful tool for further molecular manipulations with a piece of DNA (Liang). Also, it makes the study of bacteria that are difficult to grow in laboratory conditions easier since only the DNA is needed for PCR not pure colonies. PCR takes advantage of a highly conserved strand of bacterial DNA that can be used as universal primers to make copies of bacterial DNA called 16S rDNA. Now, using these conserved 16S rDNA primers and fluorescently labeled terminal nucleotides in a PCR one can make a lot of small fragments of DNA copies that then can be used to sequence the DNA strand (Hiraishi). The resulting fragments are then separated electrophoretically in a DNA sequencing machine that also reads the fluorescent labels of the terminal nucleotides thus determining the sequence of the small overlapping fragments, which are then used to construct the entire DNA sequence. The purpose of this research was to identify a bacterium from a patient sample using PCR and DNA sequencing methods. The bacterium was identified to be Bartonella henselae.

Materials and Methods

A patient sample was taken and isolated bacterial colonies were grown from this sample on solid media. Bacterial DNA was extracted from an isolated colony by breaking down the cell wall with proteases and separating the cell debris from the DNA by centrifuging. The supernatant containing the bacterial DNA was then amplified using standard PCR methods (Mullis). An initial incubation at 95°C for ten minutes was followed by 30 cycles of the following conditions: Melt at 95°C for 30 seconds, anneal at 60°C for 30 seconds, and extend at 72°C for 45 seconds. The PCR is completed by a final extension at 72°C for 10 minutes then stored at 4°C. Next, the amplified bacterial DNA was purified using a microconcentrator column. A buffer and the DNA sample were applied to the column and centrifuged at 3000 rpm for fifteen minutes, which collects the amplified DNA on the column. The column is then inverted into a clean tube and washed with another buffer via centrifugation at 3000 rpm for two minutes to release…… [read more]

Genetics or Evolution Essay

Essay  |  1 pages (341 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 1



Genetics or Evolution

In the article How the Butterflies got their Spots (2010), it talks about how scientists at Cambridge have found "hotspots" in butterflies' genes that they believe will explain one of the most extraordinary examples of mimicry in the natural world. They believe that their discovery will explain the phenomenon of how two butterfly species have evolved exactly the same striking wing color and pattern.

Heliconius, or passion-vine butterflies, live in the Americas and although they cannot interbreed, H. melpomene and H. erato have evolved to mimic one another perfectly. These butterflies have splashes of red and yellow on their black wings that signal to birds that they contain toxins and are extremely unpleasant. These two butterflies mimic one another's color and pattern in order to reinforce these warning signals.

A team of researchers from UK and U.S. universities led by experts from Cambridge, have been breeding the butterflies in Panama for the past decade, and have been searching for the genes responsible for the butterflies' wing…… [read more]

Gene Therapy FDA Ethics Term Paper

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Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 2


"Gene therapy is a medical intervention based on modification of the genetic material of living cells. Cells may be modified ex-vivo for subsequent administration to humans, or may be altered in vivo by gene therapy given directly to the subject. When the genetic manipulation is performed ex-vivo on cells which are then administered to the patient, this is also a form of somatic cell therapy. The genetic manipulation may be intended to have a therapeutic or prophylactic effect, or may provide a way of marking cells for later identification. Recombinant DNA materials used to transfer genetic material for such therapy are considered components of gene therapy and as such are subject to regulatory oversight." (Murphy, p3)

New drugs and medical techniques that wish to receive approval have to go through many steps to final market acceptance. On e overseer of the gene therapy process is the CBER which stands for the Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research. Their main function is to regulate all human gene therapy products. This entails all products made that introduce any type of genetic material into a human body with the intent of replacing some faulty or missing genetic material. The objective of this process must currently be to treat or cure a disease or abnormal medical condition. CBER has at its disposal various legal means to help it such as the 'Public Health Service Act and the Federal Food Drug and Cosmetic Act as enabling statutes for oversight.' "All gene therapy products and most somatic cell therapy products are regulated by the FDA. See "A Proposed Approach to the Regulation of Cellular and Tissue-Based Products," February 28, 1997, (62 FR 9721) as well as subsequent regulations and policy issued in this area." (Murphy) The FDA has not approved human gene therapy products for free market sale but there is currently so much gene-related research and development occurring throughout the United States and the world that the FDA has had to incorporate all new process to verify that legal mandates are being followed by all involved in this potential trillion dollar industry.


Brannigan, Michael C. Ethical Issues in Human Cloning: Cross-Disciplinary Perspectives. New York, NY: Seven Bridges Press, LLC, 2000.

Food and Drug Administration. "Cellular & Gene Therapy Products." Retrieved on December 7, 2009, from FDA at: http://www.fda.gov/BiologicsBloodVaccines/CellularGeneTherapyProducts/default.htm

Murphy, Dano B.. "Guidance for Industry: Guidance for Human Somatic Cell, Therapy and Gene Therapy." U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Food and Drug, Center for Biologics Evaluation and…… [read more]

DNA the Structure and Nature Term Paper

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Translation allows for the production of proteins in ribosomes according to the genetic code within the DNA molecule. In other words, the blueprint for life encoded in the DNA helix provides the chemical information necessary to produce a seemingly infinite variety of biological forms based on, among other factors, the synthesis of proteins according to the original genetic code.

It is our knowledge of how DNA operates within living organisms to produce the endless variety of life that we see around us that is crucial to the way in which we consider and interact with biological processes. By grasping the chemical processes that lead to replication, transcription, translation, and protein synthesis within cells, we have gained a beginning of the understanding to intervene in these processes when necessary to rewrite the genetic code of lifeforms ("The Discovery of the Molecular Structure of DNA"). Scientists have been able to successfully insert specific genes and gene sequences, and thus create new protein expressions, into plants and animals to produce new traits or resistances that are valuable for combatting diseases or producing new expressions of life that were previously unknown. In this way, we have expanded our basic knowledge of biology and the role that DNA plays therein to manipulate life at a chemical level.

Works Cited

"The Discovery of the Molecular Structure of DNA - The Double Helix." The Official Web Site of the Nobel Foundation. 2009. 5 Dec. 2009 .

Farabee, M.J. "Protein Synthesis." Estrella Mountain Community College. 6 June 2007. 5 Dec. 2009 .

"Replication/Transcription/Translation." Radboud University Nijmegen. 12 Feb. 2008. 5 Dec. 2009 .… [read more]

Future of DNA Testing Research Proposal

Research Proposal  |  7 pages (2,054 words)
Bibliography Sources: 10


Future of DNA Testing

The Beginnings of Genetic Identity Testing

DNA fingerprinting

Genetic identity testing establishes the patterns of genetic material, which is specific and unique for almost every human being.1 The sequence differences between individuals are used as basis for identity testing. The techniques applied are DNA fingerprinting, DNA profiling, and DNA typing. Identity testing in crime investigation began… [read more]

How Does Genes Affect the Way We Look and Act? Thesis

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The last two decades have brought an amazing amount of gene research to the forefront of the scientific world. The possibilities presented by such research are complex, yet exciting to ponder. Scientists can now manipulate genes in manners previously unthinkable, yet with the discovery of DNA and how genes affect humans, animals, and the world in which they interact… [read more]

Survival Theory Richard Dawkins' the Selfish Gene Term Paper

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Survival Theory

Richard Dawkins' the Selfish Gene and Jonathan Kozol's Savage Inequalities: Children in America's Schools

Sociobiology uses the Darwinian theory of evolution to understand human social behavior. To do so, sociobiologists make several key assumptions. First, sociobiologists assume that "traits less adapted to particular conditions of life will not persist in a population, because organisms with those traits will… [read more]

DNA Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (1,164 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+


¶ … DNA, which to some of you probably sounds like some kind of esoteric scientific research; or maybe others of you understand DNA as part of the basic human building blocks of biology; and surely all of us are aware of DNA in the context of crime lab stories we see on TV and read about in the newspapers. Prisoners are being set free thanks to DNA evidence that clears them of hideous crimes.

Let me assure you, all three of those general categories about DNA are correct, so thank you for your attention as I try to explain for you: a) what DNA really is; b) how it was discovered (or uncovered might be a better word); c) who did the major work in finding the DNA code for all life; and d) lastly, and perhaps most pertinent in terms of our society, what role DNA plays in the criminal justice system.

Understanding what role DNA science has played, and will continue to play, in our society, is very important, and I believe that every citizen who has an interest in important discoveries and tools for discovery - many that make our lives better - will want to know something significant about DNA.


The most pertinent thing we should look at first is of course the question of JUST WHAT IS DNA? We know it is in all living things, from trees to frogs to insects all the way up the chain to we humans. But what is it? According to the respected Web site www.about.com, the editors say DNA is "an acronym for DEOXYRIBONNUCLEIC ACID...a code used within cells to form proteins." Does that make sense? Let's look at the definition from www.medicinenet.com:"DNA is one of two types of molecules that encode genetic information. The other is RNA." So, in humans, DNA is the genetic material that defines us, and in most other living organisms, RNA is the generic material and DNA is transcribed from RNA. Make sense so far?

HOW DID the EARTH BEGIN and WHEN WAS DNA DISCOVERED? First, let's go back in time to the origins of the universe, to get a total historical perspective. The earth was "born" about FOUR-and-a-HALF BILLION years ago, according to the best scientific estimates, printed in the Taipei Times on Sunday, October 15. Earth and the sun and our solar system were born in a "whirlwind of gas and dust" about NINE BILLION YEARS after the BIG BANG, according to science journalist Christian De Duve (writing in the Taipei Times).

Now let me quickly mention that if you are a strict believer in "creationism" please don't be offended by my speech at this point, please keep an open mind, because I'm referring to REAL OBJECTIVE PROVABLE SCIENCE. I'm not challenging anyone's religious beliefs. Okay? Well, a HALF-BILLION years after our planet Earth was born, life began to emerge in primitive organisms. Microbes, plants, fungi - and much later animals and humans - all began to… [read more]

DNA an Investigators Silent Partner Term Paper

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DNA- An Investigator's Silent Partner

This essay is about DNA fingerprinting and how it has become a silent partner in the war on crime. The ever popular O.J. Simpson murder trial in the early 90's made DNA evidence another household concept. Since that trial, DNA evidence has become a common feature throughout American criminal trials and jurisprudence. "As a forensic tool, DNA analysis was initially used to link an already known suspect to a particular crime scene. In these situations, law enforcement officers obtain DNA from the suspect and compare it to DNA recovered from the crime scene." (Peterson) Direct analysis of known suspects DNA has become a very common forensic tool.

Today, the FBI and many other law enforcement agencies house individuals DNA samples in electronic databases. "Combining the results of several genetic systems as is done in DNA fingerprinting by the direct use of the product rule is based on an assumption of random mating, because it assumes that any profile of alleles at more than one locus occurs at random, that alleles at different loci even if initially found together in a subpopulation, will randomize over time." (Schacter 155) These databases carry both convicted and innocent individuals information and the objective is to create an efficient and universal acceptable DNA fingerprint process.

The norm in criminal investigation today is that if and when a crime occurs and DNA evidence is recovered, the police literally compare that sample against any and all previously obtained DNA fingerprints that are already in the database. There have been many inadvertent matches that have led to convictions but there have also been many innocent men released from custody once it was discovered that they could not have committed a crime for which they were convicted.

DNA Fingerprinting

The reason DNA is such an effective forensic identification tool requires insights into the DNA molecule. DNA fingerprinting has been distinguished as a very accurate methodology for identification. "Allozymes, DNA Fingerprinting, mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA), minisatellite, and microsatellite techniques shed light on population differentiation and genetic variability." (Caro 14) the fingerprinting concept is based on the same philosophy as the art of fingerprinting - each fingerprint is unique. DNA represents a two-stranded molecule and each strand is a polynucleotide composed of a (adenosine), T (thymidine), C (cytidine), and G (guanosine) residues.

These residues are polymerized by 'dehydration' synthesis in a unique linear chain of sequences. Modern science has clearly identified that nucleotide residue is complementary along double-stranded DNA molecules. Consider that adenosine or a forms two hydrogen-bonds with thymidine or T. Or cytidine or C. forms three hydrogen bonds with guanosine or G. Therefore, in the majority of situations, a two-stranded anti-parallel complementary DNA molecule is said to fold to create a helical structure similar to a spiral staircase. Because of this, DNA is often referred to as a "Double…… [read more]

Physical Life Science Term Paper

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Physical Life Science

Genes are the basic genetic material or the fundamental 'building blocks' of life. They are made up of spiraled sequences called DNA. (Deoxyribonucleic acid). They provide instructions for the cells and are responsible for specific traits of the body. Proteins are vital amino acids synthesized within the body that control the structural (hair, nails, etc.) and functional aspects (enzyme functions, saliva, digestive enzymes, muscle movement (myosin), etc.) of the entire cellular network of the body. Genes are like the 'blueprint for protein synthesis' and every gene is responsible for coding for a particular protein or a segment of a polypeptide. Genes and proteins are associated in a complex relationship, while the genes encode for proteins the proteins in turn control the expression of a gene.

Since the completion of the human genome project in 2003 the issue of genetic screening for hereditary diseases has become a much-debated one with ethical undertones. Presently researchers have found more than 4000 genetically inherited diseases and results have identified the specific genes responsible for more than 450 of them. [Cherie Dimaline]. For parents who have a family history of chronic genetically inherited degenerative diseases genetic screening would offer a scientific way to know the predisposition of their children to such diseases. Particularly for chronic disorders such as cystic fibrosis, Tay-Sachs disease, muscular dystrophy and sickle cell anemia genetic screening and counseling will provide prospective parents with enough information about the potential risk and would also give them more time to make informed decisions regarding future pregnancies. Further, the genetic counselor can also discuss treatment options if they are available for a particular genetic condition. Gene therapy is already being tested for Muscular Dystrophy and as molecular medicine advances more genetic disorders can be successfully managed. [Dr. Joseph F. Smith]

3) the DNA (has a double helical structure) is the principal component of the chromosomes while the gene is actually a segment of the DNA molecule, which can code for a particular protein. Genes control the production of proteins, which control the structural and functional metabolism of the body. [IBAC] Transcription…… [read more]

DNA Technology in Law Term Paper

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Ongoing research is unlocking the biological mechanisms by which a comparatively small number of genes regulated by complex protein synthesis and enzymatic actions accounts for the profound differences between human beings and fruit flies, whose genome sequence is approximately two thirds as large as ours (13)

Within a few decades, scientists will have revolutionized medicine with a comprehensive understanding of… [read more]

Alcoholism and Disorders Term Paper

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[Genome.Org 2002].

Gene Disorder

Catechol-O-methyltransferase (COMT;

116790) is an enzyme that plays a crucial role in the production of dopamine. It has been suggested in research that a functional genetic polymorphism or genetic disorder in the COMT gene results in 3- to 4- fold change in the enzyme activity and may contribute to mental disorders and alcoholism. [NCBI. 2003].

Researchers have also found a link between the leu7-to-pro polymorphism in the neuropeptide Y (NPY) gene and the chances of an individual developing alcoholism. [NCBI. 2003].

Alcoholism and genetic disorder

Recordings of the neuroelectric activity of the brain called Event-Related Brain Potentials measured by electrodes attached to the scalp and usually in response to some task indicate a reduction in the P3 component of alcoholic subjects. P3 is a positive peak in ERP approximately 300-600ms after a stimulus. The reduction in P3 levels is observed after long periods of abstinence from alcohol and it is also observed in the young naive sons of alcoholics. A similar abnormality was observed with N4 component of ERP. The changes in N4 ERP levels indicate a change in several chromosomal regions while the change in P3 level indicates changes in chromosome 4 and 5. [NCBI. 2003].

Genetic changes in alcohol preferring rats have also been linked to polymorphism in alpha-synuclein gene (SNCA;

163890). [NCBI. 2003].

The organs that are affected due to alcoholism include the heart, (cardiomyopathy) the liver, (cirrhosis) and the pancreas, (pancreatitis). It is however rare for more then one of the organs to be effected. [NCBI. 2003].

Cure for alcoholism

Gene therapy is a relatively new technique for altering genes responsible for specific diseases and thus curing the disease. For Gene therapy to be successful the faulty genes must be identified and replaced by the genes without the defect causing the disease. Either viruses or stem cells can be used to replace the defective genes. Scientists now have the knowledge and the skills to replace the virus' own genes and replace them with healthy human genes. These altered genes can then be used to smuggle healthy genes into the human cells and replace defective genes. Some of the vectors are capable of not only carrying the healthy genes but also inserting them into human cells. Stem cells are immature cells which can differentiate and develop into cells with different functions. [Centre for Genetic Education. 2002].

At this point in time, however, gene therapy is not sufficiently developed and the linkage of alcoholism to genes is not fully understood to offer some magic treatment of alcoholism in spite of on going research and evidence of linkage of alcoholism with genetic disorder and inheritance. This is also the case with many other diseases which have genetic linkages.


In this paper, alcoholism which is a disease involving craving and addiction to alcohol is looked at from a genetic perspective. It is found that there is evidence to suggest that alcoholism is inherited and there is a genetic linkage. In spite of ongoing research into… [read more]

Exploring the Mystery of DNA Book Report

Book Report  |  5 pages (1,357 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


Cells and Molecules

The Missing Substance

The 1866 landmark discovery of the father of heredity, George Johann Mendel, and his researchers on the mystery behind the transfer of traits from parent genes in chromosomes was incomplete and lacked something. Microbiologist Frederick Griffith in 1928 drew closer to the answer when his streptococcus experiment with mice when he found that genetic material was transmitted between cells, living or dead. It was in 1944 that the series of explosive experiments conducted by Oswald Avery and two associates pointed to the missing element in he works of Mendel and Griffith and their associates. Avery and his team identified this as a deocxyribose nucleic acid, a fundamental unit and the hereditary material in genes. DNA contains all the hereditary information about an organism. It also meant that virus genes consist of DNA rather than proteins. DNA means deoxyribonucleic acid. It contains the genes specific to a given species.

In Search of the Genetic Material

The knowledge about the chromosomal basis of heredity and the relationship between genes and enzymes did not yield the answer these earlier scientists sought. Chromosomes contain both proteins and DNA. The original assumption was that genes were proteins. Griffith's experiments on bacteria served as the prototype of present methods in establishing or estimating the function of genes by inputting new DNA sequences into cells. Griffth's bacteria experiments involved the bacterium responsible for pneumonia. Deadly strains of the bacterium are protected by a polysaccharide capsule from the immune system of the host organism. The mice, which were inoculated with R- non-encapsulated bacteria and S-heat-killed encapsulated bacteria got ill of pneumonia and then died.

Succeeding experiments revealed that a cell-free extract of the S. bacteria could covert or transform R. bacteria to the S. state. A substance, which they termed the transforming principle, appeared responsible in triggering the transformation.

Friedrich Miescher is recognized as the first to successfully identify DNA in 1869. His discovery started the study of DNA. His work was followed by the discovery of the contents of DNA in 1919 by Phoebus Levene. Succeeding scientists used new discoveries in figuring out how they fit together in forming long strands, which could be read. As their study proceeded, they found that parts of these strands could be read and certain traits of the organism could be determined. Today, DNA is a major study in the field of genetic engineering.

DNA: the Blueprint of Life

These genes in one organism's DNA create the cells of that organism. They also retain the blueprint of that organism. The great interest in DNA is seen as the way to understand how to fight certain diseases and how to replicate DNA strands in the laboratory. Among these diseases are sickle-cell anemia and Down's Syndrome. DNA is among the most important parts of a living organism. It consists of all that organism's building blocks and contains all the information and traits of the organisms. These include color, size, shape and deformities that can result from the… [read more]

Watson and Crick and the Discovery of DNA's Structure Essay

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Bibliography Sources: 2


However, Watson's account of getting privileged early access to Pauling's own three-strand structure model -- which he manages to see because a draft of Pauling's paper had been sent to Pauling's son Peter, whom Watson knows as a fellow American in Cambridge -- also demonstrates some of the other larger themes of the book. Upon looking at Pauling's model, Watson is able to tell that it contains a fundamental error -- "Pauling's nucleic acid was in a sense not an acid at all" -- in much the same way that Franklin was able to spot the fundamental error of Watson and Crick's three-strand model (Watson 160). The difference, though, is that Watson does not inform Pauling of the error, as Franklin had informed Watson and Crick of theirs. Instead, Watson's response is to think "we were still in the game," and to benefit from Pauling's basic error by hurrying to come up with a workable solution -- which, after getting Wilkins to show Franklin's B-structure photograph -- they manage to do (Watson 161).

In arguing that the greatest scientific gift that Watson and Crick demonstrated was that of being able to synthesize the work, the data, and the methodology of other scientists, it is difficult to say which particular element in their synthesis was the most important and enabled them to make the ultimate discovery. Certainly in Watson's own account, the tipping point would appear to occur in Chapter 23, when Wilkins gives him access to Franklin's B-structure photograph: this is where Watson describes how "my mouth fell open and my pulse began to race" (Watson 167). Given the substantial debate about Franklin's role in the discovery of DNA, it is clear that this moment is probably as important as Watson emphasizes. The handling of Franklin is one of the most perplexing and disturbing aspects of The Double Helix, considering how many inappropriate comments are made (about her lack of lipstick, her "emotional" manner, her frumpy clothing) throughout the text and how ultimately the closing paragraph of the Epilogue seems to be an apology of sorts. The truth, however, of Watson's account is that the discovery hinged upon having not only the best available data, but also the proper theoretical approach. In some sense, the real message of The Double Helix is an attempt on Watson's part to explain why Franklin had failed to correctly interpret the B-structure photograph herself -- if she had recognized it, the Nobel Prize might have been hers alone. But Watson's emphasis on her resistance to helical models altogether is intended to show why Franklin herself did not ultimately use her one most valuable piece of data to make the final step of discovery by herself. However, it goes without saying that -- however Watson may treat Franklin over the course of The Double Helix -- it was presumably Rosalind Franklin (and the data provided by her superior photographs) that was the one factor that was more important than any of the others in allowing… [read more]

Individual Differences Approach to Personality Essay

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As a result of the link, the brain subsystems are in turn associated with measurable individual differences in personality. While this biological theory to explain individual differences in personality is relatively weak, it has created significant personality research to an extent that it is still a dominant theory.

The second approach in explaining individual differences in personality with reference to genes is the type theory that suggests that personality is based in biology. Based on this foundation, biology is the determinant of type, which in turn contributes to individual traits. Type theory is explained using various systems such as ascending reticulocortical activating system and limbic system.

Given the weaknesses of each biological theory in explaining personality with reference to genes, individual differences in personality cannot be entirely and adequately explained with reference to genes. While these theories have provided the basis for biological explanations of individual differences, they are relatively weak and inconclusive. They provide biological or genetic underpinnings for understanding individual differences but do not explain these differences in a satisfactory manner. Even though individual differences in personality are inherited, genetics alone or biological underpinnings cannot be the sole contribution to these differences in personality.

The other contributing factor on why individual differences cannot be adequately explained with reference to genes is the nature of people and other animals to be fundamentally adaptive. Based on this nature, human beings are primarily adaptive to the environments they are exposed to or live in. Actually, humans have an intrinsic and tremendous ability to adapt to their respective environments.

The question of whether individual traits are caused by genetics or environments is meaningless since nature and nurture are not only in interaction but are also important to life and development. It is practically impossible for genetics to have complete effect in determining individual differences in personality. This is primarily because genotype has its impact on the developing organism within the organism's environment to generate the phenotype. Generally, biological explanations of individual differences in personality show the strong link between personality and genetics. However, genetic and environmental factors usually interact to generate some effects on an individual's personality.

The interactions between genetic and environmental factors usually occur through continuous processes beginning at conception and proceeding after birth with a significant increase in the diversity and complexity of environments. Environments influence individual differences in personality since they are physical and consist of other people and factors with different meanings. Individual diversity in personality is brought by the interaction processes between reactive organisms and reactive, meaningful environments (Thomas, n.d., p.326). Therefore, individual differences in personality cannot be adequately explained with reference to genes because of the influence of environmental factors on individual diversity.

In conclusion, personality is a term that refers to the many patterns of similarities and patterns of differences among individuals. There are various ways with psychologists have examined individual differences in personality including the use of genetics. Through this method, psychologists have mainly examined biological underpinnings that contribute to individual differences in… [read more]

Women Living in Western Society Research Proposal

Research Proposal  |  6 pages (1,740 words)
Bibliography Sources: 10


Protein Structure

Rb was identified as a tumor suppressor gene because of its frequent mutation in the rare pediatric eye tumor, retinoblastoma (16). Rb encodes a protein of 928 amino acids and three domains (Figure 2)

(16). Domains A and B. are highly conserved and form the central pocket which is critical to the tumor suppressor function of Rbp (17). A common motif, LXCXE, occurs in many proteins that bind to the AB

pocket. (17). The carboxyl terminal region of Rbp has the ability to bind DNA non-specifically and is also involved in an apoptotic pathway (4). The amino-terminal region contains consensus cdk phosphorylation sites, which are important in cell cycle control (16)(Figure 3).

The Role of Rbp in Cell Proliferation

Rbp functions in the regulation of cell cycle progression from G1 to S. phase. The transition from G1 to S. phase is dependent on the transcriptional activation of genes, such as

DNA polymerase (18). DNA polymerase and other G1/S specific genes contain E2F binding sites in their promoters (19). E2F is a transcription factor whose activity is regulated by Rbp. In its unphosphorylated, active form,

Rbp binds E2F and prevents its binding to DNA

(19). This prevents transcription of genes needed for S. phase initiation. At the G1 - S

transition, Rbp is phosphorylated by the cyclin

E complex. Phosphorylation allows E2F to be released and bind to DNA (19). E2F… [read more]

Lac Operon Genetics Practical Lab Report

Lab Report  |  3 pages (1,073 words)
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These strains are therefore phenotypically lac?. Genotypically, these strains could be lacZ? Or lacY?, since either mutation would result in an inability to metabolize lactose. Other mutations or combinations could also explain this phenotype, but are not being explored here. A lacZ? strain would not be able to produce a viable beta-galactosidase enzyme and therefore could not metabolize lactose and reduce the pH of the surrounding growth medium. The lacY gene produces a promiscuous permease transporter required for lactose entry into the bacterium, and in its absence beta-galactosidase has no substrate to hydrolize. Therefore, the genotype of the J. And K. strains are most likely [lacZ? Or lacY?], and lacI+.

The beta-galactosidase activity of the WT strain on nutrient agar plates with glucose or lactose, as assayed using MUG overlays, revealed the suppression of lac operon expression in the presence of glucose and its upregulation in the presence of lactose. This is consistent with glucose acting as a suppressor of lac operon expression.

In contrast, the lac operon is constitutively expressed in the H. strain in the presence of either glucose or lactose. This suggests that the mechanism responsible for suppression of the lac operon by glucose has been compromised. This is consistent with the H. strain having a genotype of lacZ+, lacY+, and lacI?.

The beta-glactosidase activity of the J. And K. strains is the same whether in the presence of glucose or lactose and are therefore indifferent to the two conditions. The J. strain is capable of low-levels of beta-galactosidase activity in the presence of glucose and lactose, but the K. strain is not. Therefore the J. strain is lacZ+, which in turn suggests the sugars are unable to efficiently enter the bacterium. This suggests the genotype of the J. strain is lacZ+, lacY?, and lacI+ and the genotype of the K. strain is lacZ?, lacY+, and lacI+.

7. In your own words, explain the mechanism by which regulation of E. coli trp operon gene expression responds to levels of tryptophan in growth medium. What are the similarities and differences compared to lac operon regulation? (3 marks)

The E. Coli trp operon contains the same regulatory components as the lac operon, with the difference that the gene encoding the repressor is not located near the operon and the operator element is located within the trp promoter. Another important difference is the trp operon encodes the genes necessary for tryptophan synthesis, rather than its metabolism.

The major regulatory difference is that the trp system is repressible, which means an effector molecule, in this case tryptophan, binds to the repressor and increases its activity. The result is that increasing tryptophan levels suppresses trp operon transcriptional activity via increased suppressor activity. This represents a negative feedback loop that regulates how much of the cell's energy is devoted to tryptophan production. In contrast, the lac system is an inducible system, such that the production of allolactose binds to and inhibits the lac repressor, thereby inducing the lac operon. The lac transcriptional regulatory… [read more]

Genetic Engineering Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (979 words)
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The course helps in understanding the article and major issues related to genetic engineering through various ways. First, it provides an understanding of the new direction taken by synthetic biology from the conventional focus on gene sequencing ("Extreme Genetic Engineering," 2007). Through this, the course promotes the identification and understanding of the role of genes found in nature. Secondly, the course provides information about traditional biotechnology, risks in synthetic biology, and genetic engineering.

Relation of the Article to Daily Life:

The link between the article and daily issues in life is understood based on the applications and uses of genetic engineering, which is the reason for interest in the article. It enables me to gain knowledge on how scientists and biologists understand the process with which living organisms develop and obtain their essential hereditary attributes ("Genetic Engineering," n.d.). The main issue covered by this article is related to the treatment of many wild diseases that have become common in today's society.

First, it shows how genetic vaccines through genetic modification or engineering offers improved and safer therapies and preventives for diseases that are beyond the reach of medicine. Secondly, the possibility of genetic engineering to substitute an individual's defective genes and deal with viruses through introduction of proper genes is also mentioned. Third, information on how biologists can use genetic information to control some dimensions of human existence and behaviors are also discussed. These three issues are major problems in today's world that have significant impacts on people's life. Therefore, the scientific knowledge about the topic addressed in the article provides a way with which major issues in life can be tackled.

Research on the Topic:

Research on genetic engineering should be funded by taxpayers' monies because the issues addressed in this topic affect many people regardless of their status and position in society. While the topic has continued to generate heated concerns from various people groups including clergymen and environmentalists, issues associated with it affect the society at large. Therefore, such research should be funded by public funds in order to contribute to the discovery of effective solutions to severe problems in the society.

In conclusion, the article primarily addresses ways with which biologists can contribute to a better society by developing positive traits through genetic engineering. The issues addressed in the article are based on various biological concepts. Since these issues affect the society, they are directly related to daily life and necessitate the use of public fund for research.


Alleyne, R. (2012, August 16). Genetically Engineering 'Ethical' Babies is a Moral Obligation,

Says Oxford Professor. The Telegraph. Retrieved January 17, 2013, from http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/science-news/9480372/Genetically-engineering-ethical-babies-is-a-moral-obligation-says-Oxford-professor.html

"Extreme Genetic Engineering: An Introduction to Synthetic Biology" (2007, January). ETC

Group. Retrieved January 17, 2013, from https://www.cbd.int/doc/emerging-issues/etcgroup-introduction-synthetic-biology-2011-013-en.pdf

"Genetic Engineering." (n.d.). Oracle ThinkQuest -- Education Foundation. Retrieved January

17, 2013, from http://library.thinkquest.org/C005271F/biology.html#… [read more]

Race and Genetics Essay

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As Adelman (2003) points out, many people have dark skin, not just Africans. Superficial appearance traits are the root of the racial construct.

The argument for a genetic component to race comes from the most unlikely of sources, though: the Jews. In Legacy: A Genetic History of the Jewish People, Harry Ostrer presents evidence linking together all Jews in the diaspora, Sephardi, Mizrahi, and Ashkenazi alike. The evidence is rooted in genetic science, and would seem to contradict what Adelman (2003) and the PBS documentary The Power of an Illusion discuss. Yet Ostrer's ideas actually coincide with the prevailing conclusion that genetic markers are more closely related to patterns of population migration and geography than to clusters of pre-determined races. All human beings can from the same ancestral pool, meaning variations in appearance are not qualitatively different from variations in disease predilection. The two things do not necessarily go hand-in-hand, which is why some Gentiles have Tay Sachs genes and some Arabs have sickle cell anemia genes. Those genes are not transmitted via race but via patterns of population migration that have occurred since the first Homo sapiens.

"In accord with most geneticists, Ostrer firmly rejects the fashionable postmodernist dismissal of the concept of race as genetically naive, opting for a more nuanced perspective," (Entine, 2012). Perhaps a more nuanced perspective is called for, because certainly genetics play a role in human health. Yet the most important facet of race is not skin color, hair color, or disease etiology. The most important facet of race is sociological and psychological. Race creates artificial categories of human being, and those categories are mistakenly believed to be immutable and deterministic.


Adelman, L. (2003). Race and gene studies: what differences make a difference? Retrieved online: http://www.pbs.org/race/000_About/002_04-background-01-02.htm

Entine, J. (2012). Jews Are a 'Race,' Genes Reveal. The Jewish Daily Forward. Retrieved online: http://forward.com/articles/155742/jews-are-a-race-genes-reveal/?p=all… [read more]

Genome-Wide Gene Expression Analysis Article Review

Article Review  |  5 pages (1,396 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


Genome-Wide Gene Expression Analysis in Cancer Cells reveals 3D Growth to Affect ECM and Processes Associated with Cell Adhesion but not DNA Repair

Oliver Zschenkera, Thomas Streichertb, Stephanie Hehlgansa, and Nils Cordesa, c aOncoray -- National Center for Radiation Research in Oncology, Medical Faculty Carl Gustav Carus, Dresden University of Technology, Dresden, Germany

bDepartment of Clinical Chemistry/Central Laboratories, University Hospital Hamburg-Eppendorf, Hamburg, Germany

Published in PLoS ONE 7:e34279


Published online 11 Apr. 2012.

cDepartment of Radiation Oncology, University Hospital and Medical Faculty Carl Gustav Carus, Dresden University of Technology, Dresden, Germany

There are three first authors for this manuscript, based on the notations provided below the abstract, which states the first three authors contributed equally to this work. The principal investigator is not identified outright, but the corresponding author for this manuscript is the fourth author. It appears that the first and third author belong to the same research institution, while the second belongs to a research laboratory at a different university. The three 'first' authors therefore seem to belong to research oriented departments, while the fourth and last author seems to have an affiliation with a clinical department. No changes in affiliations seemed to occur during the research upon which this article is based. This work does not represent an installment in a series of related works by the any of these authors.


The abstract is not organized into separate parts, but is one long paragraph. However, the abstract can stand on its own, because it provides all the essential information in the correct order, including background, hypothesis, methods, results, interpretations, and conclusions. The question being addressed is whether in vitro cancer models are relevant to cancer treatment approaches, given that most tumor cell lines are grown in a monolayer (2D) rather than in a more in vivo-like three dimensions (3D). The content of the abstract is consistent with that of the title and introduction, and is relatively short at 216 words. While it does contain a number of abbreviations, most are common (e.g. cDNA) and do not need clarification. Only one uncommon abbreviation is used and it is introduced immediately following the full terminology. Most importantly, the abstract does not make any claims that cannot be supported by the data presented, or introduce information not present in the main manuscript.


Of particular concern is the apparent exaggerated susceptibility of cancer cells to chemotherapeutic agents and radiation when grown in 2D, compared to the susceptibility of tumor cells grown within intact animal models. However, an intermediate model seems to provide a more accurate representation of in vivo tumor cell behavior than cells grown in 2D. This model is based on culturing cells while embedded within a laminin-rich extracellular matrix extract. This in vitro model is therefore called '3D'. Because of the increased relevance of this model, researchers are increasingly relying on 3D culture models to produce data more relevant to in vivo biological processes. There is thus a need to better understand why cells are more… [read more]

Genetics Based on the Resulting Book Report

Book Report  |  2 pages (649 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1


Although many mutations result in a loss of function or expression, there are exceptions. For example, the gap-junction protein connexin 26 is encoded by a gene susceptible to both germ-line and somatic mutations leading to deafness (Welch, Marin, Pandya, and Amos 1567). Most of the 100 deafness-linked mutations in this gene are autosomal recessive, but a few are dominant.

Experiment 3

The parental cross alone could not have revealed whether these two traits segregate independently, but the ratios resulting from the F1 cross for both traits suggest that each is segregating independently of one another. This is confirmed by doing a chi square test on the results, as shown in the table below.




Obs - Exp



























Chi Square

Sum =


The resulting chi square sum is non-significant for three degrees of freedom, therefore there is no difference between the results and that predicted for Mendelian traits segregating independently.

Experiment 4

Incomplete dominance for flower color is supported non-pink parents resulting in an all pink F1 generation and 50% pink F2 generation. Complete dominance would not have resulted in any pink flowers. The genotypes of all the phenotypes are as follows: Red = FRFR; Pink = FRFW, FWFR; White = FWFW. Incomplete dominance can be shown by comparing the results of the F1 generation with what would be predicted if complete dominance were controlling the inheritance of this trait. The results are shown in the table below.




Obs - Exp



















Chi Square

Sum =


The chi square obtained from this comparison is off the charts in…… [read more]

Forensics Techniques- Forensics Developments Research Paper

Research Paper  |  2 pages (624 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2


¶ … Forensics Techniques-

Forensics Developments

Several recent development have taken place within the field of forensics relating to the usage of DNA as possible evidence and deterrents for crime and its prevention. Although the basic concept of DNA usage remains principally the same (and is largely based on the fact that there are inherent genetic factors and attributes in people that distinguish them from others), some of these more recent developments very well may provide a considerable degree of assistance in forensics work. Several of these developments were pioneered overseas and reflect individual efforts of states to propagate the study of forensics and its applicable uses. In particular, the Netherlands has produced some fairly significant developments, including what is touted as the recently discovered ability to predict hair color.

Whereas previous efforts in the field of forensic DNA were only able to predict the hair color of redheads, this most recent development appears to include all types of colors of hair. However, a team of scientists at Holland's Erasmus University Medical Center have demonstrated a propensity for "using 13 markers in 11 genes" to denote someone's hair color (Kayser 2011). The ramifications of this development, of course, are fairly considerable for the field of forensics. If sufficient DNA is procured from a crime scene, this technique can determine what sort of hair color a potential perpetrator may have had, and effectively narrow down a list of suspects.

Another fairly recent developed technique that applies to forensics DNA usage was related to the efforts of Dan Vorhuas. Vorhaus was involved in efforts to utilize the DNA from non-human entities, such as pets or "bodily bacteria signature" from a potential perpetrator to determine evidence related to the profile of such intimate acquaintances of a suspect. Partly based upon this research, there are devices employed throughout various industries in Holland that incorporate this principle.…… [read more]

DNA Evidence DNA as Evidence Organisms Research Paper

Research Paper  |  2 pages (771 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2


DNA Evidence

DNA as Evidence

Organisms on planet Earth use DNA as their genetic blueprint, and each individual organism, including humans, have a DNA sequence that is unique to that individual. That means even within the same species, which share a high percentage of DNA similarity, each individual still has a unique DNA profile. With the discovery of DNA technology, the science of forensics has incorporated DNA technology into the identification of criminal suspects with increasing regularity. But how a suspect's DNA is discovered, linked to the crime scene, and used as a means of identification is an important aspect to the use of DNA in forensics.

Each individual organism possesses a unique DNA signature that can be used as a means of identification. By scanning 13 separate DNA regions within the genome, it is possible to "create a DNA profile of that individual (sometimes called a DNA fingerprint)." ("DNA Forensics") DNA fingerprinting was first investigated by Alec Jeffreys, an English scientist who, in 1985, developed a technique to use DNA as a means of performing human identification. ("History of Forensic DNA Analysis")

Since this time, the use of DNA as a means of identification has grown exponentially, especially among law enforcement, and there are currently hundreds of laboratories that perform DNA identification for such things as paternity tests or criminal investigations.

In the realm of forensics, DNA has been successfully collected and analyzed from such substances as blood or bloodstains, semen, tissues and cells, bones and organs, hairs and hair follicles, as well as urine and saliva. (Catalin, p.2) These things can be collected from such items as weapons, hats, bandannas, eyeglasses, dirty laundry, used cigarettes, stamps or envelopes, used condoms, bed linens, as well as panties or even the body of a crime victim (as in the case of rape). (Catalin, pp.3-4) it is important that these samples be collected as soon as possible as there is the concern of sample contamination or degradation caused by prolonged exposure. In the case of blood, for example, liquid blood must be stored with a proper anti-coagulant to maintain the blood's liquidity. For other blood samples, they must be dried (if still wet), then placed separately in their own sealed containers, labeled properly as to when and where the sample was collected, and stored in a…… [read more]

Technology and Social Responsibility Research Paper

Research Paper  |  5 pages (1,414 words)
Bibliography Sources: 5


" (Fukuyama, 2002) Fukuyama states that this type of technology should be regulated by governmental bodies and although "biotechnology is clearly unlike nuclear technology, whose destructive potential was immediately clear and war from the outset tightly rigged with political controls." (Fukuyama, 2002)

Eugenics, or the testing of babies for genetic predispositions is becoming increasingly popular and this is stated to… [read more]

Genomics and Genetics in Nursing Essay

Essay  |  2 pages (668 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2


Podcasts by experts in their respective fields can be found here, covering a wide variety of topics that could prove informative for scientists, medical professionals, and the public. Family medical history tools and an excellent discussion of the utility and limitations of genetic testing are also provided. The wealth of information is considerable and there is a noticeable effort to interpret genetic research findings and genetic testing results conservatively, thereby discouraging patients and medical professionals alike from over interpreting the value and reliability of such results.

The National Human Genome Research Institute (2011b) provides a website that lists the links to a series of articles published in the Journal for Nursing Scholarship over a two-year period beginning in June 2005. These articles are written by professionals in the nursing field with training and experience in using genetics and genomics in the care of patients. The intended audience is nursing students, practicing nurses, nursing educators, and nursing scholars. Many of the articles provide case examples of how genetics and/or genomics can be used in the care setting, while others provide an in depth look at the current state of the technology, including its advantages and limitations. Policy issues, ethical considerations, privacy concerns, educational competencies, and future directions in genetics and genomics are some of the other topics discussed.

In summary, the information provided by these three websites is both authoritative and current, which should provide some measure of comfort for medical professionals who rely on this information when providing care and when referring the websites to patients seeking additional information about a disease or the potential implications of their family medical history.


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2011). Public health genomics. Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/genomics/

National Human Genome Research Institute. (2011a). Genetics and genomics for patients and the public. Retrieved from http://www.genome.gov/19016903

National Human Genome Research Institute. (2011b). Genetics and genomics in nursing. Retrieved from http://www.genome.gov/17515679… [read more]

Genetic Engineering Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (646 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2


The Enogen would produce ethanol at a rapid and efficient rate, the product being an important industrial commodity (Pollack, 2011).

Of course, with such a fledgling science -- that is, genetic engineering -- the wariness and the concerns are rather high. Some argue about the side effects after a genetic alteration: the mice's aberrant increase in violence might also be similar should geneticists alter the same gene in the human DNA (Bhanoo, 2011). Others are concerned about the spreading of the genetically modified plants into normally or organically grown organisms; there is concern that as much as one altered corn kernel can destroy the consistency of starch from thousands of regular corn kernels (Pollack, 2011).

The authors are of the same mind when it comes to the pros and cons of genetically engineered organisms: that while there are definitely some highly-valuable discoveries and uses for genetically altered crops and animals, there are also downsides and safety concerns that should be further studied. The studies have shown that there are knowable theories on side effects due to genetic alterations, and some might even be harmful. Yet the researches do not seem highly conclusive. Further studies should be undertaken over the prospect of genetically altered organisms and whether there are long-term side effects in both organically-grown plants and humans who consume said genetically modified substances.

Works Cited

Bhanoo, Sindya N. "Altering a Mouse Gene Turns Up Aggression, Study Says." The New York Times [New York] 27 Jan. 2011, Science sec. Print.

Bittman, Mark. "Why Aren't G.M.O. Foods Labeled?" The New York Times [New York] 15 Feb. 2011, Opinionator sec. Print.

Pollack, Andrew. "U.S. Approves Corn Modified for Ethanol." The New York Times [New York] 11 Feb. 2011, Business Day sec. Print.

Pollack, Andrew. "U.S. Says Farmers May Grow Engineered Sugar Beets." The New York Times [New York] 4 Feb.…… [read more]

Transposable Elements and Horizontal Gene Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (1,047 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


, 2009). The D. willistoni Wip strain has a P. element inserted into a heterochromatic (transcriptionally inactive) region of the genome, while the D. willistoni 17A2 strain has a P. element inserted into a euchromatic (transcriptionally active) region of the genome. This study with therefore provide a survey of P. element transposase and repressor expression patterns among these different strains.


Surprisingly, only the D. willistoni strains expressed a full length P. element transcript. Although both the repressor and transposase transcripts were expressed, the concentration varied drastically between the two strains. The RT-PCR products from D. melanogaster embryos migrated at unexpected positions in agarose gels and sequencing revealed duplications and low sequence conservation. RT-PCR amplification using sense primers revealed the presence of possible P. element antisense RNA molecules in both D. melanogaster and D. willistoni.


The findings of this study suggest multiple mechanisms may be involved in regulating P. element mobility during fruit fly embryogenesis, including the expression of repressor proteins and anti-sense RNA molecules, and a repressive chromatin state. The detection of both transposase and the repressor transcripts by RT-PCR is probably due to using RNA preparations from whole embryos that contain both germ cells and somatic cells.


Although the above study was limited in scope, the ability of the PCR primers to amplify products of distinct lengths suggests P. element intronic and exonic sequence has been highly conserved between D. melanogaster and D. willistoni species. Primer sets also produced dramatically different product sizes, which Blauth et al. (2009) explained as the product of alternative splicing. An alternative explanation for this result has been provided by an in depth analysis of the Helicon TE superfamily in a variety of organisms from insects to vertebrates (Jainy et al., 2010). In spite of the considerable evolutionary distance between some of the species included in this study, sequencing revealed high levels of Helicon conservation (80-97%) regardless of whether the comparison was between little brown bats (Myotis lucifugus) and fruit flies (D. willistoni), or between Drosophila subgroups.

Jainy et al. (2010) proposed that the high levels of sequence conservation and TE fragmentation is the result of recent horizontal transfer. They argued that positive selection pressures would have preserved not only the sequence, but also prevented fragmentation of the elements. The combination of high sequence conservation and fragmentation is therefore consistent with a relatively recent transposition event that could only have occurred through horizontal gene transfer. If we rely on this explanation to explain the unexpected PCR product sizes generated by amplifying D. melanogaster embryo RNA, rather than alternative splicing, then the P. element(s) that produced these products were probably acquired through horizontal gene transfer as well.


Blauth, Monica L., Bruno, Rafaela V., Abdelhay, Eliana, Loreto, Elgion L.S., and Valente, Vera L.S. (2009). Detection of P. element transcripts in embryos of Drosophila melanogaster and D. willistoni. Anais da Academia Brasileira de Ciencias 81: 679-689.

Feschotte, Cedric and Pritham, Ellen J. (2007). DNA transposons and the evolution of eukaryotic genomes. Annu. Rev.… [read more]

James Dewey Watson the Discovery Essay

Essay  |  6 pages (1,917 words)
Bibliography Sources: 6


Unfortunately for the distinguished scientist, Watson made racial comments, meant to be purely scientific in nature, but displayed an insensitivity which could not be forgiven socially. In the modern politically correct world, filled with those who will not tolerate anything they feel is racist, Watson's comments resulted in the only ending that could have happened, with his professional ruin.

Overall, James Watson was one of the greatest scientists in American History, making one of the greatest discoveries in the history of mankind. His discovery of the structure of DNA has made possible the understanding of the mechanism of genetics. By discovering the structure of the DNA molecule, other scientists have been able to discover how DNA works, how it replicates, how it transcribes it's information, etc., which has led to the creation of an entirely new field of science, Molecular Genetics. From this one discovery, scientists in the modern world can now understand the mechanisms of certain diseases and abnormalities, it has allowed the creation of genetically modified agricultural products, DNA identification, cloning, new treatments for illnesses, and the possibilities are endless. The best way to describe James Watson's discovery of DNA is to say that it was as important to biology as Newton's discovery of gravity was to physics.

Works Cited

"Biography James Watson." Nobelprize.org. Nobel Prize Organization. 1964. Web. 14 April 2011.


"James D. Watson, Chancellor Emeritus" Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. Web. 15 April 2011.


"James D. Watson, Ph.D." Academy of Achievement. Academy of Achievement. Web 14 April 2011. http://www.achievement.org/autodoc/page/wat0bio-1

"James Watson, Francis Crick, Maurice Wilkins, and Rosalind Franklin" Chemheritage.org. Chemical Heritage Foundation. Web. 14 April. 2011.

www.chemheritage.org/discover/chemistry-in history/themes/biomolecules/dna/watson-crick-wilkins-franklin.aspx

Milmo, Cahal. "Fury at DNA pioneer's theory: Africans are less intelligent that Westerners." The Independent. The Independent. 17 Oct. 2007. Web 14 April 2011. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/science/fury-at-dna-pioneers-theory-africans-are-less-intelligent-than-westerners-394898.html

"Watson and Crick describe structure of DNA" pbs.org. A Science Odyssey: People and Discoveries. Web. 14 April. 2011.


Watson, James, D. "Avoid Boring People: Lessons from a Life in Science" Google books. Google. 2007. Web. 14 April 2011.


Wolf, George. "Friedrich Miescher, The Man Who Discovered DNA" Bizgraphic.ch. Bizgraphic. 2003. Web. 15 April 2011.


Wright. Robert. "Molecular Biologists Watson & Crick." Time Magazine. 29 Mar. 1999. Web. 14 April 2011. http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,990626,00.html… [read more]

Natural Science Concepts Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (1,019 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2


Natural Science Concepts

PART 1-Scientific Concept

One specific scientific phenomenon for which our understanding has changed over time based on new knowledge / learning / information / understanding is represented by genetics. This discipline, just like the names suggests it, is the science of the genes. It analyzes heredity and various problems that the human organism (and not only) might encounter. Taking a look at the development of this science, it is clear to see that the information available in the sector now differs tremendously from what people knew during the antiquity for example. The difference in terms of quality of the available knowledge is huge even compared to just fifty years ago. From this we deduce that the discipline develops together with the other aspects of society, such as the technological one. In the 1800s people had very little interest in genetics. They suspected that certain traits which people showed were inherited from their parents who had inherited them from their parents, etc., but there was little information regarding the how and why. As people came to know more, they became capable of asking themselves more questions regarding the issue, such as "how could we use genetic information to cure diseases?," "is it possible to improve our condition?," "can we stay young for longer?" And eventually "can we create other beings in the lab?"

Example number 1. George Mendel was the first researcher in the field to discover that people could actually know the characteristics that the successors of a living entity would have. In the 1800s, it was generally believed that the environment plays a fundamental role upon the development of the living things. Mendel found some plants in his environment that he considered to be unusual. He took them and planted them right next to the common ones. He observed that the neighborhood did not affect the characteristics of the offspring and this is how the idea of heredity was born. This revolutionary discovery changed the manner in which people lived, since they knew where to look for the causes of certain phenomena.

Example number 2. In the 20th century, Watson and Crick's work provided humanity with the possibility to know the structure of DNA. This represented a huge step from the researcher previously discussed. The new discovery allowed people t understand how and why diseases were born. Furthermore, knowing that allowed them to create proper medicine to cure those diseases. Understanding that individuals are different because they have a different genetic inheritance changed the vision on how a person with health conditions ought to be treated. Nowadays, diseases which were untreatable 80 years ago are treatable thanks to this discovery.

Example number 3. A third example which illustrates the manner in which knowledge and understanding develop through time is represented by the Human Genome project. Among the purposes of the project we could mention the intention to "identify all the approximately 20,000-25,000 genes in human DNA" and to "determine the sequences of the 3 billion chemical… [read more]

Micrornas (Mirnas) Belong to a Newly-Appreciated Research Paper

Research Paper  |  3 pages (926 words)
Bibliography Sources: 5


MicroRNAs (miRNAs) belong to a newly-appreciated and diverse class of small, regulatory, 21-25 nucleotide RNAs (Ke and al). They are endogenous, exist across many species from bacteria to mammals, and perform various regulatory functions related to physiology and development (He and Hannon). Defects in miRNA processing at the embryonic level in mammals are often lethal (Pasquinelli, Hunter and Bracht).


The first miRNAs, lin-4 and its opposing phenotype lin-14, were discovered in 1993 through a mutagenesis screening involving post-embryonic development in the roundworm C. Elegans (He and Hannon). C. Elegans go through four larval stages; mutations in lin-4 affect regulatory timing and cause certain "cell-division patterns" from the first larval stage to repeat in later stages (He and Hannon). This operation takes place as a result of "antagonistic genetic interactions" between lin-4 and lin-14.Since then hundreds of miRNAs have been discovered to be involved in processes using "antisense complementarity to inhibit expression of specific mRNAs (He and Hannon; Pasquinelli, Hunter and Bracht). Lin-4 is actually a small temporal RNA (stRNA), found to be a prototype of the abundant and varied miRNAs found across many species from plants to mammals (He and Hannon). It is already known that 2% of "known human genes encode microRNAs" (Miska).


In vertebrates, several stepwise processes are involved in the biogenesis of miRNA. First, miRNAs are "coded in genomes and formed into hairpin RNAs" (Fang and James). The mature miRNA is then generally formed from "one arm of the precursor hairpin," and released from the primary transcript (priRNA) through "stepwise processing by two ribonuclease-III (RNase III) enzymes -- Drosha and Dicer (He and Hannon). In the second process involved in miRNA biogenesis, the enzyme Argonaute is involved in genetic and biochemical factors. Specifically, the "duplex miRNAs (pre-miRNAs) are transferred to pre-micro-ribonucleoprotein (pre-miRNP), a multi-protein -- RNA complex whose constituents include Argonaute and RNA helicase" (Ke and al). In a third stage, pre-miRNAs are unwound into single strands by cofactors, releasing miRNP. Finally, miRNAs within miRNPs locate their RNA targets (Ke and al).


miRNAs have multiple known functions, and several recent studies indicate their roles may be even more varied than previously thought. Known functions include: regulation of developmental transition between the first and second, and fourth to adult larval stages in C. Elegans; "promotion of cell proliferation, regulation of fat metabolism, and suppression of apoptosis in the fruit fly D. Melanogaster"; and "promotion of haematopoietic differentiation" in the house mouse M. Musculus (He and Hannon). In some plants, miRNAs are necessary for the regulation of leaf morphogenesis, floral-organ identity and flowering time (He and Hannon).

In addition, some proposed functions of miRNAs involve: embryonic eye, tail, neuronal, and muscle development in mice; hematopoiesis of the brain, lung, bone marrow, spleen, and thymus in vertebrates and some mammals;…… [read more]

Recent Advances Within the Last 10 Years in the Treatment of Muscular Dystrophy Term Paper

Term Paper  |  4 pages (1,456 words)
Bibliography Sources: 10


Advances in Muscular Dystrophy

Muscular Dystrophy

Muscular dystrophy (MD) is a genetic disorder that results in progressive muscular degeneration particularly those of the skeletal system (Dalkilic and Kunkel, 2003). MD impacts both skeletal and cardiac muscles which can result in progressive loss of ambulation as well as respiratory and cardiac functioning (Trollet et al., 2009). Today there are over thirty… [read more]

DNA and Genetic Testing Lab Report

Lab Report  |  2 pages (659 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3


¶ … Lab Report Template (Save as: YourName_Module#_Report.doc)

An experiment was conducted to determine if DNA could be extracted from the leaf of a common weed. It was hypothesized that following proper procedures with this leaf sample would prove successful, and this hypothesis was confirmed.

DNA testing is used for a variety of applications today. DNA tests on humans are used to establish paternity during lawsuits and in other disputes (the Maury show accounting for a substantial percentage of these paternity tests), and can also be used to establish lineage to a much greater degree, even tracing individuals back to specific regions of ancestry (Fuller 2010). This use of DNA has brought a greater sense of identity to many individuals, including those whose answers were forcibly removed form their homelands, as is the case with many African-Americans.

This is not the only use for DNA, however. Forensic scientists and law enforcement can also use DNA testing to identify victims and suspects of crime (HGP 2010). Blood, hair, and even saliva can all be used to extract and identify DNA, which can be a major assistance to law enforcement in helping to solve crimes (HGP 2010). Identifying plant DNA could potentially be as useful in certain circumstances, insofar as providing clues to crime and establishing plant lineages -- the applications are virtually endless. This experiment will help to demonstrate the enormous ease with which DNA knowledge and clues can be obtained.

Materials and Methods:

In addition to a single leaf from a common garden weed (a dandelion), the necessary supplies for this experiment included a small quantity of salt (less than 1 mL), 200 mL of cold water, 30 mL of common liquid detergent, a bottle of contact lens solution (fewer than thirty drops in all were used), and approximately 300 mL of isopropyl alcohol. Five test tubes, a common kitchen blender, a glass beaker, a strainer, and several cotton sticks were also utilized.

The experiment was conducted as follows:…… [read more]

Electronic Health Records (EHR) -- Pharmacy Hemophilia Term Paper

Term Paper  |  3 pages (1,068 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2


Electronic Health Records (EHR) -- Pharmacy


Hemophilia is a bleeding disorder in which a person's blood will not clot normally. This may cause a person with the disease to bleed longer than normal following an injury, or can also result in internal bleeding. Prolonged bleeding can be life threatening. (NHLBI, 2009) Hemophilia is caused by a genetic defect of one of the genes that determines how the body makes blood clotting factor, which is a protein the body needs for normal blood clotting. There are 13 blood clotting proteins (coagulation factor) in the blood, identified by Roman Numerals I through XIII. "When a blood vessel is damaged, these clotting factors are switched on in a certain order (Blood Clotting Cascade) and work to form a clot. Specifically, these 13 factors normally combine to a clot. If one factor is missing or present at low levels, this causes hemophilia and other blood clotting problems and a proper clot will not form." (Hemophilia-Information.com). The proteins work with platelets (blood cell fragments formed in the bone marrow), to help the blood clot by sticking together, for example to seal up the site of an injury. (NHLBI, 2009)

Hemophilia is caused by a mutation of the 8th or 9th gene on the X chromosome. (Schoenstadt 2008). There are two types of hemophilia: hemophilia A and hemophilia B, based on which specific clotting factor has been affected. If you are missing or have low levels of clotting factor VIII (F8) you have hemophilia A (which is much more common), and if you are missing or have low levels of clotting factor IX (F9) you have hemophilia B. (Hemophilia-Information, n.d.). Hemophilia is inherited as a recessive trait on the X chromosome, thus typically women are carriers of the disease (because if they receive 1 x-chromosome from their mother with the disease, they will still have a normal x-chromosome from their father. Males inherit the disease directly (since they will have only the single x-chromosome from their mother, which carries the defective gene). In rare cases, the disease will also occur as a spontaneous mutation where the body develops antibodies that work against its natural clotting factors. (Hemophilia Genetics, n.d.)

Blood tests are most commonly used to diagnose hemophilia.

"Molecular characterization, carrier detection and prenatal diagnosis remain the key steps for the prevention of the birth of children affected by coagulation disorders in developing countries, where patients with these deficiencies rarely live beyond childhood and where management is still largely inadequate. These characterizations are possible by direct or indirect genetic analysis of genes involved in these diseases, and the choice of the strategy depends on the effective available budget and facilities to achieve a large benefit. In countries with more advanced molecular facilities and higher budget resources, the most appropriate choice in general is a direct strategy for mutation detection. However, in countries with limited facilities and low budget resources, carrier detection and prenatal diagnosis are usually performed by linkage analysis with genetic markers." (Peyvandi et… [read more]

Nature and Nurture the Relatively Recent Development Thesis

Thesis  |  5 pages (1,287 words)
Style: APA  |  Bibliography Sources: 5


¶ … Nature and Nurture

The relatively recent development of DNA sciences have contributed greatly to our understanding human behavior, physiology, and heredity. Genetic sequencing and the myriad offshoots of the earlier-than-expected Human Genome Project shortly after the turn of the century have already revolutionized many forms of medical treatments and generated forensic techniques capable of identifying specific individuals with unprecedented accuracy and from an ever-widening range of genetic tissues.

Likewise, the statistical probability of many specific diseases and other physiological conditions can now be identified for the individual and it is likely that within a relatively short time, it will be become routine to produce a virtual representation or "file" for every person containing his or her health and medical profile. In the next decade, microchips of our entire genetic profiles will probably fulfill the same roles in general medicine as dental X-rays have traditionally in modern dentistry.

To a large degree, DNA science has also ended the traditional debate among psychologists and behaviorists on the relative importance of the genetics of heritability (nature) or of external environmental influences (nurture). Previous arguments concerned the one-dimensional inquiry into which set of factors was more responsible for human behavior. Meanwhile, the modern approach made possible by DNA sequencing as well as various brain imaging techniques has allowed a much more comprehensive and detailed appreciation for the specific contributions of genetics and of other natural physiological differences among individuals. The latter, in particular, allows researchers to directly view specific differences in brain structures and neural architecture and to accurately test specific hypotheses of relationships between brain structure and behavior. However, rather than "ending" the traditional debate, the evolution of DNA sciences has made possible new technologies and a much wider range of possible inquiries into exactly how human behavior relates to biology and even the complex processes through which environmental influences change physiological development as a mechanism for incorporating elements of the external environment into human behavior and adaptability.

-in natural world -- impact of modern DNA science -- framed as debate because of one-dim

The Classical Argument over Nature and Nurture

Animal Studies

Some of the anecdotal evidence of the tremendous importance of heredity on behavior is undeniable and it is perfectly understandable why it generated very strong assumptions that human biology and external behavior is strictly determined by genetic factors. For one thing, there are the many obvious similarities between parents and their children as well as between children and previous generations of ancestors, such as in relation to the physical and behavioral traits commonly referred to as "skipping" generations.

In that regard, early 20th-century experiments into primate behavior demonstrated conclusively that some traits, such as shyness and fearful timidity as opposed to confidence and boldness are profoundly influenced by maternal behavior rather than predetermined by genetic propensity (Gerrig & Zimbardo, 2007; Rutter, 2006). In those series of experiments, Rhesus monkeys adopted the psychological and behavioral traits of whichever mother provided a behavioral "model" during the formative period of the… [read more]

Aerobic Respiration Produces the Most ATP? Thesis

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¶ … aerobic respiration produces the most ATP? Describe how this process works including where the entering molecules came from, the cellular location and how the ATP is produced.

Although some ATP nucleotide is produced via substrate-level phosphorylation, the majority of ATP generated during aerobic respiration comes from oxidative phosphorylation within the mitochondrion. The process of oxidative phosphorylation is driven… [read more]

Hermaphrodite Is an Organism Term Paper

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Once a hermaphrodite has mated with a male, the sperm from the male are used preferentially over the sperm made by the hermaphrodite. This form of self-fertilization means that a hermaphrodite carrying a recessive mutation will automatically produce animals homozygous for that mutation, as one-quarter of its progeny, according to standard Mendelian principles. As a result, screening for mutants is made much easier, because there is no need to set up specific crosses in order to generate homozygotes. (Hope, 1999; Kaplan, 2006)

Normally, populations of this animal consist almost entirely of diploid self-fertilizing hermaphrodites. which each produce a limited number of sperm and a larger number of oocytes. Both types of gametes result from conventional meiosis with about one crossover event per chromosome. (Hope, 1999, p. 247)

In higher order species such as animals and humans, "hermaphroditism" is the technical term denoting the presence of both testicular and ovarian tissue. Within the human species, an individual organism is a true hermaphrodite when it possesses, "a DNA chromosome karyotype of 46 XX/XY (mosaic) independently of one's external appearance. Hermaphrodites have two separate chromosome karyotypes, similar to Siamese twins sharing one body. This can happen when two fecundated gametes merge." (Corazza, 2004, p. 368)

True hermaphrodism in human beings does not exist, but pseudohermaphrodism does, where an individual has both male and female external genital organs, sometimes at the same time. This condition has been met with various degrees of shock and confusion by most people, doctors included. Surgeon Franz Neugebauer also believed that, in addition to being a fairly regular problem, pseudohermaphrodism was a particularly serious problem.

He named as a principal aim of his communication the desire to impress upon his British colleagues "the grave consequences of an erroneous determination of sex, and the frequency of such mistakes in ordinary practice." Similar articles were published by Neugebauer in the French medical press, and perhaps British and French practitioners of the time needed to be admonished that "[t]he number of cases in which the surgeon is confronted by pseudohermaphrodism is much larger than is generally supposed. (Dreger, 1998, p. 15)

So while the hermaphrodite exists naturally in nature in many forms and is part of an organisms environmental coping mechanism in many cases, in humans the concept is often met with misunderstanding and even fear. The genetic component in humans and other higher organism is considered a genetic mutation.


Corazza, E. (2004). Reflecting the Mind: Indexicality and Quasi-Indexicality. Oxford: Clarendon Press

Dreger, A.D. (1998). Hermaphrodites and the Medical Invention of Sex. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Hope, Ian A. (1999) C. elegans: a practical approach. London: Oxford University Press.

Kaplan, J. (2006). Misinformation, Misrepresentation and Misuse of Human Behavioral Genetics Research. Law and Contemporary Problems, 69(1-2), 47-59.

Omoto, C.K., & Lurquin, P.F. (2004). Genes and DNA: A Beginner's Guide to Genetics and Its Applications. New York: Columbia University Press.

Roughgarden, J. (2004).…… [read more]

Relative Importance of Heredity and Environment Essay

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Heredity vs. environment

When discussing the impact of heredity vs. environment, heredity almost invariably seems to 'win' when one considers the impact of genetic diseases, or lack thereof, on an individual's life. A person born with Downs' Syndrome because of an extra chromosome in his or her genetic code will have a vastly different way of perceiving his or her environment than someone who does not. In the case of schizophrenia, a debilitating mental disease, the risk of developing the illness is 10% greater if one has a relative with the illness, versus the risk for the general population, which is about 1%. An identical twin raised in the same household has a 60% likelihood of developing schizophrenia as his or her sibling (Cloninger, 2009).

Yet -- the real surprise about this figure is that "about 40% of the co-twins of a schizophrenic live completely normal lives without disease," despite having the same genetic material and upbringing as their affected twin (Cloninger, 2009). Clearly, environment has some impact on the development of the human psyche. And a child who…… [read more]

Histone H2AX Term Paper

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Histone H2AX

In the study of biology, histones are the main, large and organic compounds made of amino acids that are considered as among the most important elements of chromatin. Chromatin is the compound and compact form of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) in the nucleus that makes up chromosomes. Let us focus our study to one of the major and core… [read more]

Biology - Genetic Engineering: Applications Term Paper

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Biology - Genetic Engineering


Genetic engineering is the process of deliberately changing the genetic material of an organism by manipulating its deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) molecular structure for the purpose of transmitting those specifically designed changes to successive generations via genetic inheritance. The first documented (albeit unintentional) experimental demonstration of genetic engineering actually preceded the identification… [read more]

Cell Biology for Knockout Mice Experiments With Diabetes Term Paper

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Cell Biology for Knockout Mice Experiments With Diabetes

Genetic engineering holds some real promise for curing the diseases that afflict mankind and for extending human lives. To further these genetic investigations, scientists use knockout mice in an effort to determine what a gene normally does by observing the effects of its functional elimination. These knockout mice experiments have already provided… [read more]

Sickle Cell Anemia Term Paper

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Sickle Cell Anemia

There are a number of hereditary anemias, which feature disorders of the structure or synthesis of hemoglobin, deficiencies of enzymes which provide energy to red blood cells or protect the red blood cells from damage, or abnormalities in the proteins found in the cell membranes of red blood cells. Inherited diseases of hemoglobin are the most important,… [read more]

Cloning Benefits Term Paper

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¶ … Cloning

History and Background of Cloning.

Possible Negative Consequences and their Consequences.

Alternative Solutions.

Rebuttals of Opponents.


An Analysis of the Potential Benefits of Cloning

The ongoing heated debates concerning the ethical aspects of using human stem-cells, a therapeutic form of cloning, to advance medicine highlight the need for better oversight of science when real people are… [read more]

How Do Genes Influence Behavior? Term Paper

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¶ … Genes Influence Behavior

My friend Jennifer smokes about a pack of cigarettes a day. Despite constant nagging from her friends and her family and her own stated desire to quit, she is unable to break her smoking addiction. She is very concerned that smoking causes serious health consequences and even death. In the past, she has quit for short periods of time. But, then she encounters some stress in her life that she claims causes her to start smoking again. Jennifer states that cigarettes help calm her nerves. Is Jennifer's smoking habit attributable to her own lack of will power or is there something else going on? Some scientists now believe that people are genetically predisposed to their habits such as smoking. However, the jury is still out on whether or not this can actually be proved.

The goal of research on genes and behavior is to discover genes that affect brain functions that in turn affect how people interact with their environments (Azar, 2002). But, the research is very complex because many genes are responsible for various aspects of people's temperament. According to Azar (2002), genes appear to interact with each other in complicated ways that influence several traits at once -- and then likely only in very subtle ways, with any one gene likely accounting for only one or two percent of the variance in a trait. This means that hundreds of genes potentially influence each of our personality traits. However, there are only two candidate genes related to behavior that scientists can understand with any degree of confidence (Azar, 2002). The first gene is a dopamine receptor called DRD4 that may have a link to novelty seeking behavior. The second is a serotonin transporter gene called 5-HTTLPR that may be linked to neuroticism and additional anxiety-related traits such as harm avoidance.

Despite the difficulties of linking…… [read more]

Thomas Morgan Term Paper

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Thomas Hunt Morgan was an American pioneer in the fields of genetics and embryology. He is best known for his studies of mutation in Drosophila melanogaster, more commonly known as the fruit fly. Morgan's studies on mutations among the fruit flies showed that genes were carried in chromosomes, and therefore, genes were the basis of heredity. Morgan's work formed the basis for the modern study of genetics. In recognition of his achievements, Morgan was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1933.

Early influences

Morgan was born on September 25, 1866, to a family that was considered southern royalty. He was descended from illustrious families, with ancestors including Confederate General John Hunt Morgan, millionaire John Wesley Hunt and great-grandfather Francis Scott Key. However, the family's fortune turned after the Civil War, and lost much of their property (Allen 2000).

This experience partially pushed Morgan into the sciences, rather than the political and business pursuits of his family. Morgan entered the State College of Kentucky at the age of 16, where he studied natural history. During the summer, Morgan also worked with the federal geological survey. He earned his Bachelor of Science in 1886, graduating as class valedictorian (Allen 2000).

Morgan decided to pursue graduate studies in Biology, and entered Johns Hopkins University, one of the few universities at the time that had an extensive biology program. It was here that Morgan met and studied under famed embryologist and morphologist William Keith Brooks. Under Brooks' tutelege, Morgan was able to undertake experimental work and was able to co-author several important publications. Despite tight finances, Morgan was able to secure a fellowship large enough to help him finance his studies. He eventually earned his Doctorate in Philosophy in 1890 (Allen 2000).

Work in embryology year after earning his PhD, Morgan accepted a teaching position at Bryn Mawr College. It was here where he began to analyze the development of embryos from separated blastomeres. His work also included the study of fertilization in nucleated and non-nucleated egg fragments (Shine and Wrobel 1976). In addition to fueling his professional work, Bryn Mawr was also where Morgan met graduate student Lillian V. Sampson, a cytologist and embryologist who eventually became his wife.

The early 20th century ushered in considerable interest in Charles Darwin's theory of evolution, and Morgan was no exception. While Morgan agreed with evolution as a given, he wanted to know more about how natural selection occurs. The future Nobel Prize winner was interested in further explanations on the role of heredity in the transmission of variations among the species.

Morgan was also interested in…… [read more]

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