A change in an organism's genomic sequence.

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2answers
398 views

Looking for a cancer drug target database to guide sequencing of patient tumor DNA

I have a question I would like to pose to the community. I have recently received access to a bench-top ion torrent DNA sequencer. Our idea is to use this machine to sequence the DNA from patient’s ...
11
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3answers
368 views

Number of beneficial mutations cataloged?

I can see from Wikipedia that there are possibly thousands of harmful mutations that have been cataloged and linked to disease. There are also unnumbered neutral mutations. But, does anyone know how ...
10
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2answers
734 views

Are all mutagens carcinogens?

Not all carcinogens are mutagens. Alcohol and estrogen, for example, does not damage DNA. It's one of the assumptions of the Ames test that mutagenicity implies carcinogenicity, but is this always ...
9
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1answer
454 views

What is the modern state of the theory of evolution?

When I studied biology at my medical school we used to learn things about a century old: the famous Darwin's voyage on "Beagle" to the Galapagos Islands, the classical triad of his Theory of ...
9
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2answers
564 views

Which bacteria have the highest mutation rate?

From my reading on M. tuberculosis, I know that this organism has a pretty high mutation rate due to uncorrected sloppy replication, which leads to a high rate of development of spontaneous resistance ...
7
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1answer
166 views

Can cancer cells in the same person, organ, and origin have different DNA?

Is it possible for cells from the same tumor to have different genetic material, and if so, to what degree is it possible (how fast do they mutate) ?
6
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2answers
131 views

(How) can a pink grasshopper exist?

I saw this foto on Reddit recently: Is this possible? How can a grasshopper become like this? Is this just natural genetic mutation?
6
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1answer
195 views

How do scientists create specific mutations?

Suppose I want to create a mutant like Antennapaedia how will I go about accomplishing it ? I know that radiation and certain chemicals are mutagenic. So do scientists subject animals to such ...
6
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1answer
278 views

Have there been attempts to identify Chomsky's “language mutation” in humans?

I'm not versed in either biology or linguistics so please forgive any naiveties I may commit. I've learned that Noam Chomsky thinks that language is a result of a single genetic mutation in humans. ...
6
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1answer
68 views

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 ...
6
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0answers
34 views

Following DNA replication during S-phase of the cell-cycle, are all genomic regions subjected to the same stringent level of DNA-Repair?

To my (limited) understanding, there are 2 main ways that mutations can occur in DNA: Environmental (UV, etc) and mistakes during cell division. I was wondering if there is a mechanism that can give ...
5
votes
2answers
996 views

What has caused life to choose this unfathomably tiny subset of all possible proteins?

I wonder why life uses the particular proteins that it does, about 10^6 different proteins, I think? Evolution cannot explain it because the number of possible proteins is far far too large to ever ...
5
votes
1answer
62 views

Is it possible to express a mutant gene only in a specific tissue?

Imagine that someone tries to develop a knockout mouse for a gene, but this result in lethality for the homozygous. Is it possible to express that mutant gene only in a specific tissue of interest to ...
5
votes
2answers
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 ...
5
votes
1answer
127 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
136 views

Mutation-immunity in Luria-Delbruck experiment

If experiments like those of Luria and Delbruck on E. coli and T1 phage are the main source of our confidence in the mutation-immunity model, is it then highly unlikely that there are other types of ...
5
votes
2answers
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 ...
5
votes
1answer
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 ...
4
votes
2answers
225 views

Ethidium bromide and mutagenesis on cloning

When performing a DNA cloning, sometimes PCR amplicon is run in agarose and it is detected by ethidium bromide marking under UV light. After that, gel is sliced, DNA extracted from gel....... until ...
4
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2answers
59 views

Are there known downsides to removing UV mutation hotspots to prevent some skin cancers (Genetic sunblock)?

Khavari et al. recently demonstrated that a significant fraction of one of the major forms of skin cancer (cutaneous squamous cell carcinomas) are associated with a mutated KNSTRN gene (a protein ...
4
votes
1answer
75 views

Transcriptionally-mediated DNA damage

I'm researching the genetics of brain cancer, and finding a huge number of mutations in voltage-gated channels. It stands to reason that some of this DNA damage is due to the DNA being transcribed ...
4
votes
1answer
108 views

Drake's Law. What is the genome-wide mutation rate and what are the estimates?

Drake's rule Drake's rule states that the genome-wide mutation rate is more or less constant across all species — from E.coli to the house sparrow. Data From what I think being Drake's original ...
4
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1answer
80 views

Proving time travel

Consider this answer to an interesting question. It's not possible to prove completely that someone is the descendant of someone else, there's always a nonzero probability that the results are a ...
4
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1answer
57 views

Is it possible to elicit transient gene silencing by using virus induced gene silencing (VIGS) in plants?

I am looking for a molecular tech' which could result in transient gene silencing in plants. The objective is to not make transgenic plant, but to use these tech' to silence a gene of interest for a ...
4
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1answer
2k views

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 ...
3
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1answer
220 views

Why isn't the insertion of a single nucleotide destructive for DNA?

As far as I know proteins are built by sequentially reading triplets of nucleotides. But if at a certain point a nucleotide is inserted in the sequence, the following sequence of triplets is ...
3
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2answers
193 views

What if a Point Mutation is seen in only half the coverage for its location?

I've been looking at some sequenced exomes and found an interesting point mutation that causes a Proline-to-Leucine amino acid change in the protein. This seems like it could have a big impact on the ...
3
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2answers
94 views

Is vision a vestigial sense for deep ocean species?

Sunlight doesn't penetrate beyond a couple of hundred feet from the surface of the ocean. Species that exist at greater depth probably live in a state of perpetual night; yet from a quick google image ...
3
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2answers
157 views

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?
3
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2answers
320 views

variation in antigen binding site of antibodies

Antibodies or immunoglobulins are proteins made ​​by the immune system in response to alien(!) molecules. Each antibody binds to its specific antigen. This great diversity and specificity is cause of ...
3
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1answer
35 views

What is the statistical relationship between radioactivity and mutation rate?

This question tries to narrow down the scope of that question. What is the statistical relationship between radioactivity and mutation rate? By how much would the mutation rate be lowered in a ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the standing genetic variation?

I am reading this review. In the first part, the author introduces Standing Genetic Variation, described as: STANDING GENETIC VARIATION Allelic variation that is currently segregating within a ...
3
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1answer
36 views

Richard Goldschmidt's “systemic mutations”?

[TLDR] I dont understand the fault people had/have with Richard Goldscmidt's concept of systemic mutations [/TLDR] As a preface, I am a undergrad biology student, so sorry if this is a "Stupid ...
3
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1answer
60 views

Why do haemophillic females $X^hX^h$ die before birth?

I just came across a statement in my book , while reading genetics, that haemophiliac females do not survive till birth (the reason not mentioned here why) . Before posting this question here I ...
3
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1answer
66 views

Mutation Rate in Multicellular Eukaryotes

I always hear people saying that the mutation rate is around $10^{-6}$ or $10^{-7}$. I don't even know if this number is the mutation rate of genes or of a single nucleotides and I actually (almost) ...
3
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1answer
79 views

What is the difference between a DPY-10, DPY-11, and DPY-13?

My TA mentioned these three mutations of C. elegans since we started working with the worms but seems to skip over what the differences are...
3
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1answer
29 views

Mutation in axillary buds of trees overcoming self-incompatability?

I seem to recall from either reading or lecture that there have been instances of trees that are self-incompatible accumulating enough mutations in an axillary bud that the resulting branch was able ...
3
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1answer
317 views

Predicting progeny of recessive mutations using recombination

I was asked this question on a test and got it wrong, but I'd like to know how to do it. The answers are shown in the blanks below: You are studying two recessive mutations in the fruit fly D. ...
3
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0answers
83 views

At what rate do chromosomal rearrangements occur?

How often does chromosomal rearrangements occur? i.e. what is the rate of chromosomal rearrangements? I am interested about these kind of chromosomal rearrangements that are passed on to the ...
3
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0answers
72 views

Are mature trees as susceptible to mutation from exposure to radiation as seedlings?

If a plant, say a ficus or a teak, as a sapling were exposed to radiation, and a tree of the same species were present at the same distance, which of the two would be more likely to mutate?
2
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3answers
167 views

Evolution (Reductionism)

My recent post was tagged as unclear so I wanted to re frame my question. Though I am a layman, I would love to read books and find the stuff, if I get an overall picture of intelligence factor. My ...
2
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2answers
77 views

What are the major causes of mutations in DNA?

I know that point mutations can change the base sequence of a gene by altering a specific codon that codes for a particular amino acid. Are these mutations purely random events that occur when DNA is ...
2
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3answers
363 views

Why cancer mutations do accumulate sequentially?

According to Knudson hypothesis, cancer mutations accumulate in order. Statistics says, that cancer probability increases as sixth order of age, which may mean six consequential steps to cancer. But, ...
2
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1answer
59 views

Mutation in pre-mRNA sequence

Has there any mutations been recorded which cause harmful effects due to change in the part of pre-mRNA responsible for proper m-RNA splicing ?
2
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1answer
82 views

What is the difference between Single Nucleotide Polymorphism (SNP), Mutation and Structural Variation(SV)?

This is a question which plagues many people and today I was wondering it myself while writing a grant. Indeed, I've seen many people use the terms interchangeably, but they are all very different ...
2
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1answer
66 views

Most human-like teratoma ever recorded?

I'm curious to learn about the most human teratoma ever recorded. By most human I mean the teratoma which most resembles the form of a human being. I suppose there are several criteria which would ...
2
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4answers
133 views

How does mutation cause natural selection? and is it common in protists or prokaryotes?

Why is it inevitable that evolution by mutations alone should be a common cause of evolutionary change in most natural populations? And do you expect mutation-driven evolution to be more common in ...
2
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4answers
69 views

What evidence do we have to derive a rate of evolution?

When analyzing how the human species evolved and will continue to evolve over time, what evidence and tools (theory/models) do we have available to derive the rate at which this happens? Is it even ...
2
votes
1answer
105 views

Which cells will pass cancer to offspring?

Each of these types below contains a DNA mutation. Which type(s) will affect the children of the individual whose cell it is. Red blood cell T cell Skin (epithelial) cell Neuron from the brain Sperm ...
2
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1answer
101 views

Does increased cell turnover cause cancerous mutations?

If a certain set of cells or tissue are undergoing a lot of reproduction and repair cycles for some reason, does this inevitably lead to cancerous growths? If the mutation rate exceeds the normal ...