Notes for Understanding Evolution - Chapter 4

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Notes for Chapter 4: Mutation


Featured Scientist: Godfrey H. Hardy

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Links: 1 - 2

See here for a timeline of important advances in genetics

I. Causes of Mutation

RQUE4.1: What is the distinction between mutation and the sorts of variation introduced by meiosis?

RQUE4.2: What particular class of mutations are more likely to affect an unborn son than an unborn daughter when mutagens act on a mother?

Key Terms: mutation

II. Chemical Nature of the Gene

RQUE4.3: Why do T's attract A's, and G's attract C's (in DNA)?

III. Self-Copying (Replication) of DNA Molecule

RQUE4.4: Why is neither new strand produced by DNA replication "ancestral" to the other?

IV. Molecular Mechanism of Spontaneous Mutation

RQUE4.5: How does a base pair substitution occur?

V. Language of Life

RQUE4.6: How is the RIPE -> ROPE word change analogy in the text (p. 45) like the case of DNA mutations? How is this example unlike DNA mutations?

VI. Transcription of DNA

RQUE4.7: Can you articulate the difference between DNA replication, transcription, and translation?

VII. Frequency of Mutations in Human Disorders

RQUE4.8: Why are large genes more likely than small genes to experience a mutation in any particular generation?

RQUE4.9: If only as low as one in 1,000,000 human gametes per generation on average experience a mutation in a particular gene, why is it also true that, on average, all human offspring contain at least one newly mutated gene that is potentially harmful?

VIII. Evolutionary Consequences of Mutations

RQUE4.10: Why are even "harmful" mutations potentially adaptive if the resulting allele happens to be preserved in the population?

IX. Chromosomal Aberrations and Pregnancy Loss

RQUE4.11: As opposed to base pair substitutions, mutations involving chromosomal abnormalities would appear to be much more severe. Why, then, is this such an important type of mutation?

Click link to return to Biology 404 Schedule
or back to Chapter 3 or ahead to Chapter 5

This page created 8/16/01 © D.J. Eernisse, Last Modified 2/12/03, Links Last Completely Checked 2/12/03