Questions tagged [genetics]

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

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How can someone share 50% of their DNA with their parents yet all humans share 99.9%?

I have heard that humans share 99.9% of their DNA with other humans. I have also heard that a child shares 50% of their DNA with their parents. How do I resolve this apparent contradiction? It has ...
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Do DNA repressors exist?

I know about enhancers and the mechanism that lead them to increase the gene expression of their targets but I was wondering if similarly DNA repressors exist. I know about protein repressors but I am ...
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How much does a biological experiment to validate a gene function cost?

I am computer scientist working on machine learning methods applied to predicting missing Gene Ontology annotations. In many papers, I wrote that my computational methods are very useful to suggest ...
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583 views

What are some (bioinformatic) methods to characterize potentially novel gene transcripts?

I am working with a few novel transcripts of genes- before I confirm their existence experimentally, I would like to perform some bioinformatic analysis. I have already considered coding potential, ...
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Redundancy of the genetic code

One particular codon codes only for one amino acid, but an amino acid can be coded for by several different codons. Now according to the genetic code, the codon UUU ...
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What does phasing mean?

What does phasing mean in genetics/informatics? I've heard that a phased file is a file that has genes separated by chromosome, but can someone give a concrete definition of what phasing actually ...
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923 views

What is the minimum population size that Hardy-Weinberg calculations can be applied to?

I'm trying to find out if a particular allele is in Hardy-Weinberg disequilibrium, but the data is poor. What's the minimum population number that you can use to get any sort of respectable conclusion?...
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Chromosomes are of different size but why do all chromosomes have similar GC percentage?

When I browsed NCBI I saw a pattern: even if the chromosome sizes, number of genes, and number of proteins are different, GC% in chromosomes tend to be similar. The examples are linked below. Yeast, ...
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Pedigree Probability of Autosomal Recessive Trait

Here is a pedigree: The trait is autosomal recessive. The question is: What is the probability that the bottom 2 people (4 and 5) have a child with the trait? I tried doing ...
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A good textbook on GMO

I am interested in learning about GMO. The topic is so wrapped in controversy, that it's hard to find a good book that introduces the basic concepts involved. I went through various university ...
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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 ...
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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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Selection on linked loci in a diploid population

Let’s consider two linked loci $A$ and $B$ that are both bi-allelic. In consequence, we have four different possible haplotypes $A_1B_1$, $A_1B_2$, $A_2B_1$, $A_2B_2$, which frequencies are $X_1$, $...
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Do antisense transcripts have different names than their sense strand transcripts?

I want to find which genes in the human genome can potentially be complementary to a transcript that could act as antisense transcript inhibtion? Are cis-NATs (naturally occuring anti-sense ...
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How many, and how severe, are known single gene polymorphisms for obesity?

A fairly recent meta-analysis of studies examining the association between adult obesity and polymorphisms of the FTO gene (Peng et al., 2011). The paper looked at 59 studies and concluded that, "FTO ...
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646 views

Linkage and LD: quantitative or qualitative?

My understanding is that the concept "genetic linkage" can be expressed in quantitative form, like: A predisposing gene X was found in close genetic linkage to Y. ...
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Colorblindness in females and random X chromosome inactivation

From Annenberg Learner: Because the X is inactivated randomly in cells, one cell could have the maternal X inactivated, while the adjacent cell could have the paternal X inactivated. This causes ...
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GWAS: why is replication in another cohort so crucial?

Almost all the landmark GWAS (Genome-Wide Association Studies) reviews agree that, for a GWAS finding to be valid, it needs to be replicated in an independent cohort. What exactly is the rationale ...
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How exactly can dsRNA be introduced to a cell?

Is it just by viruses or are there other means by which it gets into cells, such as plasmid uptake?
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How to map the Gene name to its Gene Symbol?

I am learning in Gene data lately so I apologize for the silly questions in advance. I read a paper for a cancer on human which found some important genes. For example, the paper listed one of genes ...
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How to determine whether changes of an allele's frequency are due to genetic drift or selection?

Given that both natural/artifical selection and genetic drift are evolutionary mechanisms that influence how allele frequencies shift in a population: Are there ways to determine whether a frequency ...
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Within and Between Allelic Class Diversity

I am reading Charlesworth et al. 1997. They talk about diversity within and between allelic classes. Nucleotide diversities ($π$) at each neutral site were estimated from the mean of $2 \sum z_t (1-...
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Are recessive, deleterious alleles less common on the X chromosome than the autosomes in humans?

As there is a potential for them to be more readily purged in hemizygous males (and in cell lineages in females with the deleterious-allele-bearing chromosome activated), I would expect the frequency ...
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Hill-Roberston effects and effective population size

From this article, first page, middle of the second column: Even if harmful alleles do not become fixed, they can still reduce the efficacy of selection on neighbouring loci through a process ...
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Which functional annotations could be useful?

Analyzing a genome, for a generic gene, which functional annotations (e.g from Gene Ontology) can help understanding its meaning/function or, at least, provide helpful informations? Annotations of ...
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How does a drastic change to the genome persist and spread?

I just read the article on songbirds in the November, 2019 Scientific American. The article explains that songbirds have an extra chromosome, called GRC (germ-line restricted chromosome) that other ...
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Book on current state of knowledge on the genetics of intelligence

I'm looking for a book that gives a good summation of the current state of knowledge on the genetics underlying intelligence. I have read textbooks on human population genetics but I'm looking for ...
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Why do telomere lengths not predict differences in life spans among species?

We read that ageing is related to cell death when we run out of telomeres at the end of our DNA molecules. Humans live roughly for 70 years - the traditional three-score years and ten. This compares ...
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Easy derivation of Kimura's approximation for the probability of fixation of a mutation

Kimura's approximation for the probability of fixation of a mutation under selection finds recurrent use in population genetics models till date. I am trying to understand the mathematical basis of ...
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On average how many genes / alleles do people share?

I am curious about how much more a child can be alike to one parent than the other. If a child were to inherit all the alleles that are shared between both parents from one parent, but inherit all ...
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Evolution of Wheat

In the evolution of wheat, there are two instances of chromosomal doubling, when Emmer wheat Triticum turgidum was formed from Einkorn wheat, and when Triticum aestivum was formed from Emmer wheat. ...
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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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Why is an allele dominant or recessive? [duplicate]

Alleles refer to duplicate genes, where one allele can be dominant over the other. What makes an allele dominant or recessive, given that both code for a single protein?.
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How to estimate heritability from breeding data

I have a lot of plant-breeding data (tens of thousands of results) that are composed of phenotypes of parents and offspring. The plants however went trough years of selection and it is not balanced. ...
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Why do most animals never seem to evolve over millenia?

People often say, including those with extensive knowledge in biology, that a certain species of animal will evolve in one way or another: From changing environments. Mutations. Possibly even genetic ...
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Is the genetic term “polycistronic” still used in modern biology?

Is the term "cistronic", meaning an ORF on a mRNA, still commonly used in modern genetics? I´ve seen "polycistronic" being applied to prokaryotic mRNA in old textbooks, but I´ve rarely stumbled upon ...
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How many transcription factors are there?

In molecular biology and genetics, a transcription factor is a protein that binds to specific DNA sequences, thereby controlling the flow (or transcription) of genetic information from DNA to ...
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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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Will modern-day insects grow to massive size in a high-oxygen environment?

It's a reasonably well-known fact that insects grew to massive sizes due to the excessive concentration of oxygen in the prehistoric-Earth's atmosphere. If one were to try to recreate this high-...
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Why do people with type O blood have anti-A and anti-B antibodies?

People with type O blood have anti-A and anti-B antibodies, even without receiving a transfusion. Why?
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Can an argument be made that humans are 90% bacterial?

On the blog, All about Scientist in Microword: Microbiology, I read the post We are 90% bacteria, actually, which says that humans are 90% bacterial cells. If this is the case, then why don't we ...
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Turning publicly available genome data into proteins

I'm a computer scientist who is starting to dabble with biology. My eventual goal is to model different kinds of cells with a computer program. As of right now, I'm just trying to take some smaller ...
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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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Are mutations random?

The following claim Mutations are random or just the use of the expression Random mutations are very common among lay people. The claim is very common among lay people. The claim is often ...
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Crick’s Central Dogma — Counter Cases

I was recently reading about non-coding RNAs being a counter example to Central Dogma of Biology. Can someone add more cases which violate the Central Dogma? Thanks! UPDATE - Reference of lncRNAs ...
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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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Genetic effects on personality

It is said that genes are partly responsible for the choices we make in our life; our genes help to create our environment, and then that environment can influence our personality. So, beside genes, ...
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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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Genetic engineering for insulin production

In order to put human DNA inside a bacteria in order to have it create Insulin, from what type of cell would you need to take the gene for insulin? I thought it should be from any somatic cell, since ...
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Why is Turner syndrome a problem?

Turner syndrome is a chromosomal disorder where one of the X chromosomes is missing. For more details visit the Wikipedia page I don't understand why missing one X chromosome would be harmful. In ...

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