Genetics is the branch of biology that deals with the transmission and variation of inherited characteristics.

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Why is the function of lacA (encoding thiogalactoside transacetylase) not clearly understood?

It's almost half a century since the lac operon was discovered but isn't it weird that the precise role of transacetylase isn't clearly understood ? Here a wikipedia article with a link to a journal ...
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Is the book “Bioinformatics for Geneticists” outdated?

I am going to be working with genetics data in my organization's data warehouse next year and helping our biotechnology department. I work in academic research, but I have very little genomics ...
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Is the poly(A) tail added while transcription is still underway?

I read in Campbell that ....splicing and poly A tail addition may also occur while transcription is still under way. How can the poly(A) tail be added while transcription is still going on?
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How was the heritability of IQ tested?

I have read that IQ is highly heritable. How could this be tested? For honest testing, it seems to me that only children who were abandoned should have been tested, to exclude education effect. Was ...
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How does smoking, an environmental factor, cause cancer, fundamentally a genetic disease?

If cancer is fundamentally a genetic disease, how might an environmental factor such as smoking cause cancer?
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248 views

Why Can't A Male Mule Have Offspring?

I've read that female mules can sometimes have offspring, but that male mules are incapable of doing so. Why is that the case? Is their sperm not capable of entering the egg or is their a genetic ...
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180 views

Eusociality and Natural selection?

Eusociality, particularly focusing on the presence of certain altruistic sterile organisms within the social set-up creates questions as to why would the process of natural selection have favoured the ...
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How many gigabytes of DNA are there on earth?

The human genome is about 770 MB, the C. elegans genome is about 100 MB, the yeast S. cerevisiae is about 12 MB. Different other genomes have been sequenced: how many GB of genomic DNA we have now? ...
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368 views

Is sexual reproduction outside the same biological family possible? Has it ever occured successfully?

Are there any examples of two species taxonomically classified in different biological families that have successfully hybridized and produced viable offspring? If not, is there an example of where ...
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Historical recovery from mass extinction events

Is there a way to generally characterize how species "regrew" after the various mass extinction events happening periodically from 450 Ma to 65 Ma. Would the surviving species just start back where ...
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Difference between mutation and DNA damage

What is the strict difference between mutation and DNA damage? As far as I understand it, a mutation is an alteration in the genetic sequence, having "tricked" the repairing machinery and thus ...
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164 views

Microarray data and analysis tools

Microarray has various uses, and to analyse the data a main function classification is used. There are many methods used to classify the data but what are the best and most frequently used methods? ...
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192 views

How does electroporation mediated recombination work?

For yeast and other organisms, DNA can be readily taken up into the cell naturally or through membrane disruption. What does applying a voltage to cells do exactly that allows more recombination to ...
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What is the effective relatedness of inbreeding?

If a human inbreeds with a relative, how distant does the relative have to be before the homozygosity in the child is no higher than if the mate were randomly chosen from the global population?
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331 views

What do the signs +/+ +/- mean in this image?

I don't understand what this graph is supposed to explain, especially what the signs +/+ or -/- mean. I just know it characterises some rats.
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686 views

How does the modern theory of evolution solve these apparent problems? [closed]

I hold to the truth of Evolution, but I've encountered several problems with it, that I can't answer, and I can't find an answer for, despite much research. If would be great if anyone can answer ...
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What determines if a gene is dominant or recessive?

Going back to my high school days we were taught about dominant and recessive genes. We were taught how to calculate the geneotype and pheneotype of potential offspring using a small table (forgotten ...
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Can genes that activate transcription factors also called be called transcription factors?

If the sole known function of a gene is to activate a transcription factor, would that gene also be considered a transcription factor, or is there a word for such genes that are further upstream on ...
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135 views

Why do I have a lot in common with my mother? [closed]

I have not spoken to my mother in 15 years but recently connected with her and her side of the family. I was primarily raised in a different sub-culture after the age of 4. As it turns out I ...
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159 views

Number of genes required to sustain life

Are there estimates of the minimum number of genes required to sustain life? In what I mean by life here, I don't include viruses.
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178 views

Accuracy of a particular genetics test

I am a newbie in biology and I am simply trying to discover the field of genomics. Consider the question - Are genetic tests accurate? I don't believe they are as the genes may not provide the ...
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93 views

What to do with a DNA sequencer? [closed]

My school is very fortunate to have a DNA sequencer, and I want to find an opportunity to learn how to use it. I'm currently taking AP Biology this year, and I hope to do an independent study in ...
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Genetically speaking, are dogs exactly similar to humans and chimps both?

Richard Dawkins mentions in his book The Greatest Show on Earth that dogs are exactly similar to both humans and chimps. Supposing that a cell contains the genetic similarity between 2 species, he ...
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369 views

Negative value on linear gene expression in microarrays

I am starting to use microarrays and maybe this is a dumb question: Using Illumina microarrays, linear gene expression can be negative? Or maybe some artefacts have been introduced? And, in this ...
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Genotoxic agent and their metabolic pathway

What are the mechanics (set of biochemical reactions) allowing a given genotoxic agent to modify the mutation rate at a given spot? to induce only a given type of mutation (from Gs to Cs for ...
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888 views

Difference between viral and human genetic material

I have heard that there is a difference between viral and human genetic material. What is that difference? If I take my cells and take DNA out of them and insert only a small part of it having a ...
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Is “Fight or Flight” distance genetic

If you took a newborn animal and completely isolated it from its species, would it be capable of assuming a fight or flight distance preset by its species, due to their being no basis for what could ...
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328 views

what is knob heterochromatin?

I am reading a paper which discusses Maize Genome Structure. Descriptions of the structure is given in the papers introduction. I know about heterochromatin "heterochromatin stains intensely, ...
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298 views

Possible Genotypes of 4 Alleles of Adh

There are four alleles of Adh which are Adh-1, Adh-2, Adh-3 and Adh-4. Their respective frequencies are 0.11, 0.84, 0.01 and 0.04. What are the Hardy-Weinberg frequencies of the possible 10 ...
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60 views

Does a large effective population size result in faster decay of linkage disequilibrium (LD)?

I am thinking about an invasive species that was introduced into North America just a few (<20) generations ago. Using microsatellite genotypes (105 loci), I have identified almost no significant ...
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Are identical twins exactly the same?

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=identical-twins-genes-are-not-identical According to this article some identical twins show differences with respect to their copy number variants. ...
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555 views

What is Mendelian Randomization, and how is it used to infer causality in epidemiology?

Studies of human traits and diseases are inherently confined to observational studies, known as epidemiological studies. This can make it very hard to determine what actually causes a particular ...
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126 views

Do spouses begin to share genes over time?

I apologize if this hypothesis sounds strange by I was wondering if any research had been done on a phenomenon which I've seen and have corroborated with many other - the idea that over time spouses ...
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388 views

What hair color will result in someone inheriting both blond and ginger genes?

Both the genes for blond hair and ginger hair are recessive, so they need both parents to give the same gene for it to take affect. What happens when a person has 1 copy of a recessive gene and ...
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49 views

Function of ER in reviewing mutated proteins

At least in the case of Cystic Fibrosis it happens that a mutant protein (which could actually function!) is held in the ER because the ER detects it as misfolded. Does this happen in every type of ...
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Low complexity region and relaxed selection

I'm reading a text (Wagner, 2007) on identifying positive selection. In paper, the author says that low complexity regions are known to be associated with relaxed selection. I'm trying to understand ...
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What is the genetic basis of blood type (ABO) system?

What is the genetic basis of the A/B/B+/O/etc. blood type system? Are there definitive loci that correspond to each or can multiple different genotypes produce the same antigen profile? Also, is the ...
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Confusion related to the use of PCA to determine the background network

I was reading this paper related to use of gene expressions for predicting the drug response. I have this confusion, the paper has used PCA on the covariance matrix formed by the genes to get what is ...
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Are biological systems engineered? They are often reverse engineered at a molecular level!! [closed]

Understanding biological systems, molecular biologists need to “reverse engineer” them. Is this evidence that the systems were engineered to begin with?
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Is there any definition of complexity about gene and protein according their function?

Sorry for such a question,if it is too naive. Is there any definition of complexity about gene and protein according their function?If so,what is the relation between them?
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What determines the colors and patterns of a clam shell?

Earlier this week I was looking at some bivalve shells that had ornate patterns which ranged in color from a light orange-pink to a deep orange-red. Here is an image I found online that seems to be of ...
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Can retroviral delivery systems “overwrite” genes?

As the question states, what are the limits of retroviral genetic delivery systems? Are they limited to adding additional gene sequences to a cell, or can they actually overwrite specified segments ...
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When can a virus modify DNA in every cell of a living organism?

I've recently heard about experiments with brain tissue, where a virus is introduced in a rats brain, causing a "glow when electric charge is present" protein to be created. This protein then helps to ...
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Smallest unit on which selection can act

Traditionally, the individual was considered to be the smallest unit on which Natural Selection (NS) acts. Today, we usually consider the gene as being the unit of NS. Of course, we should also ...
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560 views

Is there variation of AT/CG ratio along species?

Chargaff's rules say that the number of Adenine of the number of Thymine in a genome are equal (nA=nT) and similarly nC=nG. This makes obvious sense knowing that C binds to G and A to T. But what ...
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What species have had their genomes sequenced/are being sequenced?

The human genome project released it's first complete genome nearly ten years ago. Since then many species have also been sequenced. I am trying to find a list of completed (and possibly ...
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How did the activities of protocells become inheritable?

I have learned that first a protocell came to exist and its characteristics came to be passed on by genetic material. So how come genes for all the activities come to incorporate into genetic ...
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How diverse are dogs in their traits other than appearance?

I've asked this question about dogs not so long ago, and the short answer was - dogs are the most diverse looking species of mammals because they got a small number of genes that have a big impact on ...
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Inheritance of Huntington's disease

People with Huntington's disease have HTT genes with more than 37 copies of CAG repeat. The risk of extra copies being generated is higher during sperm formation than during ovum formation. Why is it ...
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Suggestions for an experiment? [closed]

I would appreciate suggestions for my year-long AP Biology project. Such a project would consists of a standard experiment, to be done over the period of a year, so it would have >to be fairly ...