The scientific study of the structure and function of genes at the molecular level, particularly chromosomes and DNA.

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Telomere shortening during replication

It is widely know that each cell cycle during DNA replication some fraction of the telomeres is lost, and this phenomenon is called the end replication problem. Well this is due to the fact that the ...
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Knockdown of long noncoding RNA (lncRNA) - how is it done?

I don't work at the wet lab and don't know all the details about the knockdown techniques. My question is: How lncRNA knockdown is done? For example - you have lncRNA that is functional in the ...
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How does Cro protein expressed by lambda phage kill its host?

I read that the DNA segment of lambda phage integrated in host DNA could switch between lysogenic state where cI represses the expression of Cro and lytic state where Cro expression takes over and ...
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What is a holocentric chromosome?

I was doing this question that asked: "How many centromeres does a typical chromosome have?" I thought one and the answer was:"One, except for holocentric chromosomes." So then what are ...
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Exon skipping in mammals

I've heard from several sources that the predominant form of alternative splicing (at least in mammals) is exon skipping. However, my personal evidence is only anecdotal: I've heard it and read it, ...
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Process of Transcription

During the process of Conversion to Ribonucleoside Monophosphates the various ribonucleoside triphosphates break off their high energy bonds after linkage to the DNA.But the first ribonucleotide ...
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Is sequencing error a function of the nucleotide being read?

Checking out on Google Scholar, I can see that for Illumina (just to consider one example) the sequencing error rate is of the order of 0.001-0.01 per nucleotide. Talking about sequencing error, ...
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Why do genes with closely related functions often reside on different chromosomes?

Why do genes with closely related products are so often positioned on different chromosomes? To illustrate what I mean, here is an example from immunology: the invariant region of MHC is on ...
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Problem on number of amino acids that an alien can use

A new life form discovered on a distant planet has a genetic code consisting of five unique nucleotides and only one stop codon. If each codon has four bases,what is the maximum number of unique amino ...
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What does it mean for the signals for transcription and translation to be “conserved”?

I was reading this article: "Overview of vector design for mammalian gene expression." for an explanation of why mammalian cell lines are used for expressing cloned genes, and one of the reasons ...
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596 views

How does GC-content evolve?

Background GC-content refers to the frequency of base pairs that are either C or G in the genome, or in other words the number of GC base pairs divided by the addition of the number of GC base pairs ...
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Activation Of Embryonic Genome

Embryonic gene activation is a process by which the embryo begins to transcribe its newly formed genome.As the embryonic gene activation occurs during early stages the paternal genome may not have any ...
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Transposons and the net amount of DNA

The retrotransposons and certain DNA-transposons, are "jumping" sequences which may be incorporated elsewhere in the genomic DNA of an organism, through varying mechanisms. This insertion is almost ...
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How to calculate virus titre from qPCR

I harvested some lentivirus from 293T cells and want to titre the result. I infected 293T cells on a well plate with 400,000 cells per well which I infected with virus stock, and 1 in 10, 100 and 1000 ...
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mutant down but not out

I am interested in a gene which is null lethal but I need to temporary induce diminished capacity. If a cell is homozygous is it possible to induce heterozygous phenotypes or a partial knockout from ...
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How can I find the mRNA sequence for a specific prokaryotic gene?

What I want to find out is the start of the transcription for a specific gene, how long the UTR is before the actual coding sequence starts. I've looked at various databases like NCBI Gene, Refseq or ...
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Should gene therapy safety protocol include isolation?

In the case of a gene therapy trial where viral vectors are used to deliver genes into mammalian cells, including humans, should biosafety and ethical protocols include isolation of the patient as a ...
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What is the most complex biological organism (or precursors) that we have been able to synthesize from raw materials?

In the Miller–Urey experiment they produced several amino acids. I'm not sure if there were other similar experiments that got further. ...
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Gibson assembly - primer design with A and T rich regions

I have question about Gibson assembly. I have done it several times and it always worked okay for us, but now I want to assemble together a fragment which has sequence like this: ...
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Inbreeding Coefficient and Coefficient of Relationship

Wikipedia gives the following formula to calculate a "path of coefficient of relationship" between an ancestor $A$ and an offspring $O$: $$\rho_{AO} = 2^{-n} \left( \frac{1+f_A}{1+f_O} \right)^{1/2} ...
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What metabolic processes do dormant and ungerminated seeds carry out?

What metabolic processes does a dormant embryo in a seed carry out? Seeds will not germinate, either because of a lack of favourable conditions, seed hibernation, or because of a genetically ...
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Consensus codon optimization by organism

Does a public database exist that contains this information? I'm trying to make a simple gene annotation program that will let me input a DNA sequence and then optimize it based on one of these tables ...
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What does it mean to clone a gene?

When I look up information related to the identification of disease genes, texts will often refer to the gene being "first cloned." What does "clone" mean in this context? Is it simply a synonym for ...
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Alternatives to PCR

PCR uses cycles of heating and cooling to denature the strands, calling for special thermostable DNA polymerases. In a cell, during replication, Helicase unwinds the DNA without the requirement of ...
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Why mutations in genes involved in general processes like DNA repair increase the risk of developing specific types of cancer?

For example, mutation in MHS2, which encodes a protein involved in the repair of mismatches that occur during DNA replication, dramatically increases the risk of developing colon cancer. (There are ...
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Can DNA & RNA be considered as nature's programming language?

The final frontier of Biological Sciences could be considered understanding the effects of variation in the DNA (and RNA). If after fertilization the DNA of the zygote could be genetically ...
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Prenatal Marketing

This is for a short story idea. Is it possible to modify the DNA of a child to make their metabolism more susceptible (physical response, addiction, etc) to a certain type of chemical i.e. a chemical ...
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What is the point of DNA sequencing?

This is a very very basic question. I've looked at methods such as chromosome sequencing and shotgun sequencing. Wikipedia says that: ...
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Why do oncogenes show genetic dominance?

As we know that tumor suppressor gene causes cancer only when both the alleles are recessive in nature.But in case of oncogenes if only one allele is dominant it can cause cancer.Why in case of ...
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How does promoter sequence affect initiation?

I don't know if this might have been highlighted in recent research, but a textbook I have states that "the exact way in which promoter sequence affects [transcription] initiation is unclear" I'm ...
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methods for targetted deletion of genomic regions?

I would like to know what are currently used methods for targeted deletion of genomic regions in mammalian organisms or cell lines. I have heard of Zinc-Finger nucleases as a recent genetic ...
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Markers for human genetic mapping

For human genetic mapping several different types of markers are used: RFLPs (Restriction Fragment Length Polymorphisms) VNTRs (Variable Number of Tandem Repeats) such as mini- and microsatellites ...
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How does alternative splicing work?

I am trying to find out what controls what exons are spliced out, and I keep coming across the term cis regulator, but I cannot seem to find a clear explanation of what happens... Thank you in ...
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720 views

Viral Mutation Mechanism

I think I have a wrong concept about viral mutation process. First of all what is mutation actually? I mean, I know it's a sudden change in DNA, happening when subjected to mutagenic agents. But can ...
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Are the DNA codon mappings arbitrary?

I am a Biology novice so I apologize in advance if I state anything incorrectly.... My question is, are the DNA codon mappings arbitrary? I understand that the DNA code is made up of codons which ...
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DNA dependent RNA polymerase

How does a RNAP locate a specific gene? For instance, growth hormone has to be produced and the RNAP has to locate the gene. But the promoter (TATA box) will also be present infront of all cistrons. ...
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Why can't NMR be used on large RNA molecules?

While reading my Molecular Bio textbook, I came across a sentence that stated that NMR cannot be used on large RNA molecules to determine their structure. Why is this? Is it because RNA is single ...
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Coefficient of relationship and path of coefficient

A path of coefficient of relationship is defined as $$\rho_{AO} = \left( \frac{1}{2}\right)^n \sqrt { \frac{1+f_A}{1+f_O}}$$ This SE post discusses this definition From this, the coefficient of ...
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Why does the stability of YAC increase with size?

From Lehninger Principles of Biochemistry : The stability of YAC increases with size (up to a limit). Those with inserts of less than 100000 are gradually lost during mitosis. Why does this ...
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Cloning a gene of an organism with an nonsequenced genome

What would be the best protocol to clone a gene about 5kb in size? The genome is not sequenced, but the gene itself very similar to orthologous genes of organisms with known sequences.
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Lyonization and X-linked disorders?

Lyonization or X-chromosome inactivation is the conversion of all but one, X-chromosomes in Females into non-coding heterochromatin (i.e. deactivated) leading to the formation of one or more Barr ...
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When DNA is at its uncondensed form, what can it do?

I think it can do two things: The cell may be duplicating the genome during S phase. The cell may be transcribing the DNA into mRNA. Question: Can the two activities occur at the same time or one ...
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How to find conserved residues across species?

I want to identify if certain phosphorylation sites are conserved for protein X across humans and yeast. I know from MS data that there are 4 phosphorylation sites in Human protein X. In order to ...
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genetic complementation problem

I've attached the picture of the problem. SO, based on the information I managed to assemble two large cistrons. (if the combination of two mutants yield (-) mutations are on the same chromosome) ...
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When performing mutagenesis for an assay, how do you decide on the sample size of individuals to be mutated such that all genes are covered?

If I want to study, say, gustatory response of salmons to a bile acid, I need to mutagenize a sample of salmon males. However, given that there are many genes involved in this response, what is ...
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ATP to disassembly of nucleotide ratio

DNA Helicase, the enzyme that is responsible for tearing apart the strands before DNA replication, requires ATP to rip apart nucleotides. I have asked this question to several professors and they ...
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How and why are cells irradiated in human-rodent hybrid cell biology?

When human-rodent hybrids are made the amount of human chromosome in the hybrid can be reduced by irradiation. Why and how exactly is this irradiation step performed?
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What is the most reliable tumour suppressing gene for NSCLC?

I was looking at some tumour suppressing genes that can be helpful in diagnosing lung cancer (particularly NSCLC - Non-small-cell lung carcinoma) at an early stage. I came across a few such as p53, ...
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Which is the guideline to choose a molecular target to identify vertebrate hosts from arthropod bloodmeals?

There are some molecular targets to identify vertebrate hosts from arthropod bloodmeals including the Cyt b gene and the COI gene. Which are the standards or characteristics that I have to bear in ...
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G>T transversion VS. T>G transversion?

So I'm reading about how mutations in DNA can be caused by oxidative damage. An example of a product of oxidative damage is given: 8-oxo-7-hydrodeoxyguanosine My textbook says that this product ...