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Chapter

Cover Evolution

Mutation and Variation  

This chapter explores mutation and variation under the context of inheritance. It highlights how genetics offers a vast trove of information about the history of life on Earth and the evolutionary factors acting on living species. The replication of DNA is an exquisitely precise affair, but errors can still be made which make mutations the ultimate source of genetic variation in all organisms. Generally, mutations come in various forms and these differ in how much of a genome they affect. Some species have mechanisms that contribute to inheritance and play a role in evolution regardless of genetics.

Book

Cover Biological Science

Jon Scott, Gus Cameron, Anne Goodenough, Dawn Hawkins, Jenny Koenig, Martin Luck, Despo Papachristodoulou, Alison Snape, Kay Yeoman, and Mark Goodwin

Biological Science: Exploring the Science of Life spans the full scale of biological science — from molecule to ecosystem. The first part of the text looks at life and its exploration. Topics covered in this section include exploring the science of life, the emergence of life on earth, defining life, evolutionary processes, and the diversity and organisation of life. Here, classification of life is also dealt with. The next section moves on to quantitative toolkits. Here, the text showcases nine toolkits which look at understanding data, size and scale, describing data, ratio and proportion, understanding samples, designing experiments, assessing patterns, formulae and equations, and rates of changes. Thereafter there are five modules. The first module is about life at the molecular level. Topics here include genetics, genomes, proteins, metabolism, and molecular tools. The second module looks at life at the cellular level. Here the text examines cell division, microbial diversity, microbes in life, and viruses. Module 3 is about the human organism and looks in detail at tissues, organs, and systems. The fourth module covers organismal diversity and describes structure, adaptation, and survival. The text finishes with a fifth module which looks at organism in their environments. Here, the chapters turn to ecology, evolution, genes, populations, communities, and ecosystems.

Book

Cover Biological Science

Jon Scott, Gus Cameron, Anne Goodenough, Dawn Hawkins, Jenny Koenig, Martin Luck, Despo Papachristodoulou, Alison Snape, Kay Yeoman, and Mark Goodwin

Biological Science: Exploring the Science of Life spans the full scale of biological science — from molecule to ecosystem. The first part of the text looks at life and its exploration. Topics covered in this section include exploring the science of life, the emergence of life on earth, defining life, evolutionary processes, and the diversity and organisation of life. Here, classification of life is also dealt with. The next section moves on to quantitative toolkits. Here, the text showcases nine toolkits which look at understanding data, size and scale, describing data, ratio and proportion, understanding samples, designing experiments, assessing patterns, formulae and equations, and rates of changes. Thereafter there are five modules. The first module is about life at the molecular level. Topics here include genetics, genomes, proteins, metabolism, and molecular tools. The second module looks at life at the cellular level. Here the text examines cell division, microbial diversity, microbes in life, and viruses. Module 3 is about the human organism and looks in detail at tissues, organs, and systems. The fourth module covers organismal diversity and describes structure, adaptation, and survival. The text finishes with a fifth module which looks at organism in their environments. Here, the chapters turn to ecology, evolution, genes, populations, communities, and ecosystems.

Chapter

Cover Principles of Development

Vertebrate development I: life cycles and experimental techniques  

This chapter explores similarities and differences in the development of frogs, birds, fish, and mammals. It also looks into experimental approaches which investigate vertebrate development using Xenopus, zebrafish, chick, and mouse as models. The chapter refers here to transgenic techniques which are used to produce mutations with specific genes as an example. Additionally, the chapter notes how all vertebrates have a similar basic body plan with defining structures such as the spinal cord and skull. It shows the similarity between a mouse and a human in terms of early development. The chapter also links approaches used in investigating human embryonic development. Techniques for interfering with development can be broadly divided between experimental embryological techniques and genetics-based techniques.

Chapter

Cover Evolution

What’s the Evidence?  

This chapter examines the evidence for evolution that we can see through looking at fossils, anatomy, biochemistry, ecological genetics, and genomics. Fossils are the most familiar evidence for evolution since they gave proof of life in the past geological ages. Anatomy studies the structure of living organisms and its comparison to other groups of organisms gives clues to evolutionary relationships. The science of biochemistry depends on the development of tools and techniques that spark new insights into the natural world. Genomics, on the other hand, showcases the formation of species such as DNA. The chapter also gives an overview of developmental biology which capitalizes on the emergence of genomics.

Chapter

Cover Thrive in Genetics

Working with Genes: Analysing and Manipulating DNA  

This chapter explores the process of analysing and manipulating deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA). A wide range of molecular biology techniques enables DNA to be manipulated and analysed, yielding information about the nature and function of genes. The terms recombinant DNA technology, DNA cloning, and gene cloning all refer to the same process, namely the transfer of a DNA fragment from one organism to a self-replicating genetic element that replicates the fragment in a foreign host cell. Multiple copies of a DNA sequence can be produced by cloning or by using the polymerase chain reaction. Genes are isolated from DNA libraries and gel electrophoresis separates different-sized DNA fragments. Meanwhile, the nucleotide sequence of a segment of DNA is determined by Frederick Sanger’s dideoxy method or next generation sequencing methods. Finally, forward and reverse genetics are different analytical approaches to linking phenotype and genotype.

Chapter

Cover Biological Science

Mendelian Genetics  

This chapter examines the study of Mendelian genetics. It shows how genetically determined traits are transmitted in sexually reproducing eukaryotes from one generation to the next. It then considers the organization of genes and chromosomes in sexually reproducing eukaryotes. The experiments of Gregor Mendel established the laws of inheritance involving phenotypes and genotypes. They also showed how genes for different traits segregate independently through either mitosis or meiosis. The chapter considers the extensions and refinements of Mendel's laws, which include genetic heterogeneity and pleiotropy. It explains how human inheritance also covers the incidence of genetic diseases that run within families.

Chapter

Cover Zoo Animals

Small population management  

This chapter focuses on small population management. It starts by examining the concept behind reproductive biology and then discusses genetics and endocrinology. Next, the chapter look at various relationships between animals such as mating systems, breeding, and parenting, while exploring the issues and constraints on reproduction in captivity. It notes behaviour competence as a way to describe the ability of an animal to express appropriate behaviour in a given situation. It then explains the process of monitoring the reproductive status of animals in captivity by referencing invasive and non-invasive methods. It looks at the usage of reproductive technology to help with animal reproduction such as artificial insemination (AI), in vitro fertilization (IVF), and embryo transfer. Additionally, the chapter tackles how to manipulate the reproduction of exotic animals.

Book

Cover Introduction to Bioinformatics

Arthur M. Lesk

Introduction to Bioinformatics starts off by introducing the topic. It then looks at genetics and genomes. It moves on to consider the panorama of life. The text also considers alignments and phylogenetic trees. There is a chapter on structural bioinformatics and drug discovery. The text also examines scientific publications and archives, particularly media, content, access, and presentation. Artificial intelligence is considered as well, in addition to machine learning. There is an introduction to systems biology that follows towards the end. The book's final chapters look at metabolic pathways and control of organization.

Chapter

Cover Biological Science

Mendelian Genetics  

This chapter examines the study of Mendelian genetics. It shows how genetically determined traits are transmitted in sexually reproducing eukaryotes from one generation to the next. It then considers the organization of genes and chromosomes in sexually reproducing eukaryotes. The experiments of Gregor Mendel established the laws of inheritance involving phenotypes and genotypes. They also showed how genes for different traits segregate independently through either mitosis or meiosis. The chapter considers the extensions and refinements of Mendel's laws, which include genetic heterogeneity and pleiotropy. It explains how human inheritance also covers the incidence of genetic diseases that run within families.

Chapter

Cover Thrive in Genetics

Principles of Mendelian Inheritance  

This chapter examines the principles of Mendelian genetics, which is concerned with patterns of inheritance associated with one or a few genes. Monohybrid crosses investigate the genetic basis of traits determined by a single gene. Meanwhile, dihybrid crosses consider the inheritance patterns produced by the segregation of alleles of two genes. An individual possesses two alleles for each gene, which may be similar or different. Alleles segregate into gametes during meiosis. Next, the chapter looks at the relationship between probability and Mendelian genetics. The chi-squared statistical test is used in Mendelian genetics to compare observed progeny numbers with expected ratios, because the ratios of different progeny phenotypes can be informative of underlying genetics.

Chapter

Cover Thrive in Genetics

The Genetics of Bacteria, Viruses, and Organelles  

This chapter assesses the genetics of bacteria, viruses, and organelles. It begins by looking at the bacterial genome; most bacteria have a single circular chromosome, several million nucleotides in length. Bacteria and viruses have small haploid genomes. They are well suited to genetic studies because they have high rates of reproduction and produce large numbers of progeny. Plasmids are often present in bacterial cytoplasm. The chapter then considers how DNA can be transferred between bacterial cells by conjugation, transformation, or transduction. Viruses have DNA or RNA genomes. Bacteriophages are DNA viruses that infect bacteria, while retroviruses are RNA viruses that infect eukaryotic cells. Mitochondria and chloroplasts have their own genetic systems.

Chapter

Cover Genomics

Genomes And Ethics  

This chapter examines some of the ethical implications of genomics, looking at how advances in genetics are likely to be experienced by people, as patients, consumers, and citizens. Our ability to sequence genomes is getting faster and cheaper all the time. Indeed, genomic technology is now being utilized in more settings across society than ever before, from medicine, population health screening, and recreational consumerism (ancestry testing, nutritional testing), through to policing and crime prevention. Given that genomic information links us to our relatives, the decisions that we make about it will all have an impact on those we are related to and the knowledge that they too can gain. It is this fact that makes genetic information quite different from other sorts of medical information. Thus, we all have a stake in how we as a society use genomic data.

Book

Cover Evolution

Douglas J. Futuyma and Mark Kirkpatrick

Evolution offers expertise in evolutionary genetics and genomics, the fastest-developing area of evolutionary biology. The text emphasizes the interplay between theory and empirical tests of hypotheses, thus acquainting readers with the process of science. It addresses major themes — including the history of evolution, human evolution, evolutionary processes, adaptation, and evolution as an explanatory framework. In addition, it examines levels of biological organization ranging from genomes to ecological communities.

Chapter

Cover Genetics

Human Genetic Mapping, Genome-wide Association Studies, and Complex Traits  

This chapter brings together fundamental concepts of genetics and genomes on complex traits and genome-wide association studies, which focus primarily on human traits and diseases. It explores genome-wide association studies in order to build upon the basic principles that identify contributing genes and causative mutations. It provides an approach that shows how genome-wide associations integrate genomic variation, complex phenotypes, and evolutionary history. The chapter mentions the Human Genome Project, which made it possible to identify hundreds of individual genes that affect disease phenotypes. It focuses on human genetic diseases and provides an analysis of the human genome, which allowed a much deeper understanding of many aspects of the overall biology of Homo sapiens.

Chapter

Cover Genetics

The Genetics of Populations  

This chapter delves into population genetics with a human focus and explores the assumptions of the Hardy—Weinberg equilibrium model. It reviews the many different types of evolutionary change which can operate in order to shape the genetic structure of a population and the imprints these leave at the level of the genome. It also features long-term studies of bacterial populations presented as a method to explore evolution experimentally. The chapter describes how transmission of alleles and genotypes within a population can be assessed, even when the individual matings cannot be monitored. It defines non-random mating as the main process that affects genotype frequencies without affecting allele frequencies directly, which can result in population stratification.

Book

Cover Genetic Analysis
Genetic Analysis applies the combined power of molecular biology, genetics, and genomics to explore how the principles of genetics can be used as analytical tools to solve biological problems. Opening with a brief overview of key genetic principles, model organisms, and epigenetics, the book goes on to explore the use of gene mutations and the analysis of gene expression and activity. A discussion of the genetic structure of natural populations follows, before the interaction of genes during suppression and epistasis, how we study gene networks, and personalized genomics are considered.

Chapter

Cover Thrive in Genetics

Genetics of Populations  

This chapter examines population genetics, which analyses the patterns of genetic variation shown by groups of individuals, i.e. by populations. This contrasts with the main concern of Mendelian genetics and, to a large extent, of quantitative genetics, as both focus on the genotype of individuals and the genotypes resulting from single mating. Population genetics explores the evolutionary processes that shape a population’s genetic variation, i.e. mating systems, migration, mutation, population size, and selective forces. The chapter then considers how the analysis of genetic diversity in populations of endangered species helps formulate conservation policies. Ultimately, the genetic variation within and between different populations is described in terms of frequencies of alleles and resulting genotypes. The chapter looks at the Hardy–Weinberg equilibrium, non-random mating, natural selection, and genetic drift.

Chapter

Cover Thrive in Genetics

Quantitative Genetics  

This chapter focuses on quantitative genetics, which analyses the inheritance of complex traits. Complex traits are multifactorial: their expression is influenced by multiple genes and various environmental factors. Most complex traits exhibit continuous phenotypic variation and threshold traits exhibit just two phenotypes. Susceptibility to express a threshold trait is quantitative: it is determined by numerous genetic and environmental factors. The chapter also looks at the role of additive genes, the statistical analysis of continuous traits, heritability, human quantitative traits, and quantitative trait loci (QTL), which are genes that influence quantitative traits. Heritability values indicate the relative input of genetic and environmental factors in determining a phenotype.

Chapter

Cover Evolution

The Evolution of the Theory: Changing Views  

This chapter discusses the changing views into the development of an evolution theory. Modern Synthesis is a set of tools for thinking which builds a model of the evolving living world. Modern Synthesis emerged from the re-interpretation of Charles Darwin's Origin of Species following the re-discovery of Gregor Mendel's work on genetics and the establishment of August Weismann's cell theory. The chapter notes how natural selection is known to be the main driver of evolutionary change, which is observed through the shifts in allele frequencies in populations. Additionally, behavioural systems, symbolic systems, and epigenetics help explain evolution theory.