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

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How well supported is the hypothesis that aging is mainly caused by the number of mutations in tissues?

I heard the hypothesis, that the (main) reason of aging is the increasing number of mutations in body tissues. The higher the number of mutations is, the older tissue is. Is this true? And how well ...
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124 views

Bicoid regulation of hunchback

I'm learning about development via the example of Drosophila embryogenesis. I understand that bicoid regulates hunchback, among other genes. My question whether the regulation is direct or indirect? ...
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Are there mechanisms that limit the amounts of time conjugation and F-plasmid transfer can happen? If yes, what are they?

Not all bacteria have acquired F-plasmids through conjugation. Some of the mechanisms for this are unsuccesful conjugation events (mechanical disruption), no transfer due to integration in bacterial ...
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67 views

“Enhancers” of enhancers?

I am looking for examples (if any) of genomic regions which regulates the activity of enhancers, either augmenting or reducing it. Essentially some kind of enhancers (or repressors) of enhancers to ...
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226 views

What percentage of the (additive or not) genetic variance is explained by the 'n'- most important loci?

Standard models in population genetics look up at the evolution of few loci which impact fitness. The variance in fitness is determined by the genetic variance and the environmental variance (and the ...
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How was the cama's life expectancy computed?

A cama is a hybrid between a male dromedary camel and a female llama. The first cama was born on January 14, 1998, yet on the Wikipedia page it is said that a cama's life span is 30–40 years. How was ...
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How does Artificial Selection work?

As far as I know for evolution to work mutations are necessary. Mutations are the raw material on which natural selection works. But mutations are always completely random and human beings have no ...
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431 views

A free book/resource for learning genetics?

I took an undergrad class in genetics. I felt it was not too intensive and I do not feel prepared for grad school (if I can manage to get in.) Does anyone know of a preferably free resource for ...
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219 views

Why don't flies avoid the motorway?

Flies have a short lifespan, therefore evolution should technically happen over a shorter period of time (years). Flies die all the time from getting hit by cars on the motorway. Those flies that ...
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85 views

How to identify genes required for biofilm formation

This is just a homework question: Q: Let’s assume that there is an unknown set of E. coli genes that are required for biofilm formation. Describe a genetic experiment you could perform to try to ...
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153 views

Can genetically modified genes jump to bacteria in the eater's intestine?

The Guardian ran an article a while back talking about GM gene's jumping to bacteria in an eater's intestine. Has other research confirmed this phenomenon?
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The genetic and physiological origins of laughter?

This Wikipedia article defines laughter in many terms, such as... "a visual expression of happiness, or an inward feeling of joy" and "a part of human behavior regulated by the brain, ...
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175 views

Functions of the CFTR gene?

I am a senior in high school and I am studying cystic fibrosis. I don't quite get the function of the CFTR gene as this is my first time dealing with this type of heavy scientific info. I had ...
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510 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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150 views

How is gene expression estimated?

I'm reading this fantastic article on estimating body time: Molecular-timetable methods for detection of body time and rhythm disorders from single-time-point genome-wide expression profiles and one ...
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100 views

What are the different ways an exon gets spliced?

Exons are produced by more than one mechanism, e.g. splicing out introns after transcription, if I remember correctly. Please list all mechanisms.
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167 views

Where do amino acids get attached to tRNA and where is it synthesized?

Some very basic parts of transcription/translation seem to be left out in various literature. I can't find the answer to this anywhere: How exactly is tRNA synthesized? I realize that mRNA is ...
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90 views

What is an operon?

What is an operon in a eukaryotic cell, and how does it regulate the expression of genes? I've already read Wikipedia, but it is not enough clear to me. Unfortunately my knowledge in genetics are very ...
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766 views

Why is the DNA codon table “equal” to the RNA codon table

Before anything else please pay attention of the double quotes on the "equal" in the title - I know they are not equal, but you will understand in a bit. If I look at the DNA codon table here or in ...
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91 views

Plasmid in the nucleus and gene expression

If we insert a plasmid into a human nucleus that contains exact copy of gene and all relevant promoters to produce some human protein, will the cell create functional protein from that plasmid only ...
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Are Asians more genetically homogenous than other races?

I've heard that Asians (I'm not entirely sure which subgroup was being referred to) tend to be more genetically homogenous than other races, with people of African lineage being on the other end of ...
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272 views

Can extinct animals be cloned?

Scientists have found mammoth blood, and are planning to clone a mammoth. How does one go from having its blood to a full blown living mammoth? Is it possible? Why does it matter if the blood is ...
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861 views

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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180 views

How does a new species survive without suffering inbreeding?

Just what the title states. The thought came from reading When has an organism evolved enough to be called a new species? I'm probably wrong but I understand new species happen sporadically rather ...
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652 views

Genetic carrier Pedigree of Recessive Traits

A human male and female couple with normal colored ears discover that, in both of their families, their fathers (who have normal ears) each had siblings with red ears. Red ears is a rare autosomal ...
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What is the distinction between F' plasmid and R plasmid?

Is there a difference between an F' plasmid that has taken up a chromosomal gene that conveys antibiotic resistance, and an R plasmid? Is a bacterium containing an R plasmid and yet lacking an F+ ...
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100 views

Understanding recombination scoring in family pedigrees

I am having some problems understanding recombination, and I am not sure what element I am missing here. This figure is an example from my text book. The pedigree belongs to a family with an autosomal ...
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229 views

Restriction Mapping - Homework question

I have trouble in solving this exercise. Exercise A circular plasmid of 10,000 base pairs (bp) is digested with two restriction enzymes,A and B, to produce a 3000 bp and a 2000 bp bands when ...
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442 views

Microsatellite shifts (peak calling) GeneMapper! Thesis help!

I'm a masters student attempting to conduct a parentage analysis on a population of fish for my thesis. My advisor and post-docs haven't been very helpful, so I need some help! I have dinucleotide ...
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What generates variation in a species?

What is the biological mechanism behind the variation within sexually reproducing species? Obviously, the children are combinations, to differing degrees, of their parents. But how does the variation ...
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78 views

Doubt on genomic code for nucleosome positioning?

I was reading "A genomic code for nucleosome positioning" (by Eran Segal et al). And I am having 2 doubts. The figure(b) in this image from the paper shows the graph of fraction (3-bp moving ...
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112 views

Can human mRNA be translated in vitro by prokaryotes?

As the genetic code is universal, can mRNA from a human cell be correctly translated by a prokaryote in a in vitro translation system?
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410 views

Correlation between genome size and mutation rate?

Martin Nowak in his book "Evolutionary Dynamics" talks about a given correlation between genome size and mutation rate. What correlation does exactly exist between these two concepts? Is it a ...
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8k views

What's the difference between shotgun sequencing and clone based sequencing?

What are the main differences between shotgun sequencing and clone based sequencing?
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What is a focal copy number variation?

Often, genetics studies, especially genome wide ones, talk about "focal copy number variations" in genes or regions of the chromosome. I know what a copy number variation is. What does "focal" mean, ...
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69 views

How are behaviors genetically coded in animals?

I am curious as to how complex behavior is passed down genetically? For example, how is the building of a web genetically coded in a spider? And how is the complex behavior of constricting prey coded ...
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41 views

what is linkage disequilibrium supposed to measure?

During reading about genetics I came across with the term of linkage disequilibrium, and I do not really understand what it supposed to mean. What is linkage disequilibrium? My current understanding ...
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128 views

Are there any mutagens that can undo the mutations they cause?

I was reading a section from my textbook about tautomeric shifts, and it seems to suggest that there are some mutagens that can be directly responsible for the phenomenon. The section is mainly ...
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43 views

How does de-myelination occur in multiple sclerosis?

From what I understand, only the oligodendrocytes are affected in multiple sclerosis, and they are attacked by T cells which cross the blood-brain barrier. This leads me to two questions: How is the ...
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49 views

Components of the concept of Developmental Noise?

Developmental noise is a concept that correspond to the amount of possible phenotypic variance of a given genotype in a given environment. Intrinsic noise (aka Cellular noise) is a component of ...
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Is there are practical lower limit to gene length in E. coli?

Question is rather self-explanatory. Putting aside other post-transcriptional factors like rate of degradation of transcript, what is the smallest gene ever reported to have successfully been ...
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46 views

How do I know which alleles the parents have?

I have the following assignment where I am to look at the "tree" (not sure the english word) and assign whether or not they can be autosomal dominant or recessive as well whether they can be X-linked ...
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71 views

Examples of genes involved in plastic responses

Adaptive plasticity involves sensing the environment and responding adaptively to it. Intuitively, I would think that this process may ask for a more or less complex genetic machinery of regulation of ...
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474 views

What is the biological mechanism underlying caffeine intolerance? (CYP1A2 or other?)

As far as I can tell, caffeine metabolism occurs primarily via the CYP1A2 enzyme. I am curious as to whether mutations in the CYP1A2 gene are associated with caffeine intolerance. Some site that is ...
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159 views

Phenotypic Variation of cattle - looking for academic sources

Can someone please point me in the direction of a good academic article on the following: What are possible sources of phenotypic variation of different 400 day weights of cattle? Furthermore how ...
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106 views

Non Coding DNA and its effect on evolution

I had a discussion with a friend of mine; from his understanding, bacteria and other small organisms have higher amounts of "coding" DNA and, as such, are able to evolve much faster than organisms ...
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41 views

How can the phenotypic effects of a tumor suppressor mutation be silenced?

I've been reading a little about the "two-hit" hypothesis for tumor suppressor genes here, which mentions that some genes exhibiting haploinsufficiency are exceptions to the hypothesis. I've read ...
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77 views

Are there ways to speed up the growth of plants?

I'm interested in what humans can do to speed up the rate of growth in a plant. I'm interested in both the context of home gardening and large-scale, institution-backed projects. Obviously, optimal ...
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60 views

Is probability for double crossing over included in distance cM? [task]

We got this task: There are 3 genes (acb) on one chromosome (linked inheritance). Distance a-c = 12cM, a-b=16cM. Probability for double crossing-over (CO) is 0,6%. Find ratio of genotypes of ...