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Presentation on theme: "Genetics."— Presentation transcript:

1 Genetics

2 Genetics Genetics is the science of heredity
Genetics explains how genes bring about characteristics in living organisms and how those characteristics are transmitted from parents to offspring Genetics is at the center of all biology because gene activity underlies all biological processes!

3 Genetics Remember, genes are discrete units of genetic (hereditary) information consisting of a specific nucleotide sequence in DNA

4 Experimental Genetics
The modern science of genetics began in the 1860’s when Gregor Mendel, an Austrian monk studied the principles of genetics by breeding garden peas Available in a wide variety of shapes and colors Cheap and abundant Short generation times with large amounts of offspring

5 Experimental Genetics
Mendel studied 7 characters (heritable features) each with its own distinctive trait (variant of that character) He created true-breeding lines; lines of peas that were homologous for each trait A true breeding line had only the genes that coded for that trait, both chromosomes had the same version of the gene For example, a true breeding purple pea plant had only ‘purple’ genes, not white

6 Flower color Purple White Flower position Axial Terminal Seed color Yellow Green Seed shape Round Wrinkled Pod shape Inflated Constricted Pod color Green Yellow Stem length Tall Dwarf

7 Experimental Genetics
Mendel wanted to see what happened when he crossed true-breeding lines for one trait with true-breeding lines for another trait His results led to the establishment of several principles: Mendel’s Law of Dominance Mendel’s Law of Segregation Mendel’s Law of Independent Assortment

8 What would happen if you cross a purple flower with a white flower?
Mendel’s results indicated that 3 of the 4 flowers produced had purple flowers, while 1 had white How?

9 Mendel’s Law of Dominance
The white and purple flowers of the pea plants are two versions of a gene for flower color Alternative versions of a gene are called alleles Mendel’s law of dominance states that when an organism has 2 different alleles for any given character, 1 allele will dominate

10 P plants Gametes F1 plants (hybrids) Gametes F2 plants
Genetic makeup (alleles) P plants PP pp Gametes All P All p F1 plants (hybrids) All Pp Gametes 1 2 P 1 2 p F2 plants Sperm P p Phenotypic ratio 3 purple : 1 white P PP Pp Genotypic ratio 1 PP : 2 Pp : 1 pp p Pp pp

11 Mendel’s Law of Dominance
For each character, an organism inherits 2 alleles, 1 from each parent These alleles may be the same or different An organism that has 2 identical alleles for a gene is said to be homozygous An organism that has 2 different alleles for a gene is said to be heterozygous

12 Mendel’s Law of Dominance
If the 2 alleles of an inherited pair differ, then one allele will determine the organism’s appearance over the other, and is called the dominant allele The other allele has no noticeable effect on the organism’s appearance and is called the recessive allele We use upper and lower case letters to describe the dominant and recessive alleles, respectively

13 Mendel’s Law of Segregation
A sperm or egg carries only 1 allele for each inherited character This is because allele pairs segregate (separate) during gamete formation (meiosis!) When sperm and egg unite during fertilization, they each contribute their own allele, restoring the paired ‘condition’ to the offspring

14 Mendel’s Law of Independent Assortment
The alleles of a gene pair separate from one another independently of the other alleles of another gene pair during segregation (meiosis) The origin of any particular allele will be randomly selected from paternal or maternal chromosomes via the process of crossing-over (why, for example, a cat’s color is independent of its tail length)

15 Mendel’s Law of Independent Assortment
For example, Aa will segregate from Bb, or in other words, the color of the flower is independent from the inheritance of the height of the plant

16 In this example, yellow and green are 2 traits for the color character (indicated by Y and y, respectively) and round and wrinkled are 2 traits of another character (indicated by R and r, respectively) RRYY rryy Gametes RY ry RrYy Sperm 1 4 RY 1 4 rY 1 4 Ry 1 4 ry 1 4 RY RRYY RrYY RRYy RrYy 1 4 rY RrYY rrYY RrYy rrYy Yellow round 1 4 Ry 16 –– 9 RRYy RrYy RRyy Rryy Green round 16 –– 3 1 4 ry Yellow wrinkled RrYy rrYy Rryy rryy 16 –– 3 Green wrinkled 1 16 ––

17 Genetics terminology The complete genetic make-up of an organism is called its genotype The physical expression of the genotype is its phenotype Homozygous for the dominant allele recessive allele Heterozygous Genotype: P B a PP aa b Bb

18 Phenotypes can reveal genotypes
Chocolate labs are labrador retrievers that are homozygous recessive for coat color Black labs have at least 1 copy of the dominant allele; but their genotype can be Bb or BB bb B_

19 Phenotypes can reveal genotypes
How can you determine your dog’s genotype (without a blood test)? You can testcross your dog; mating your dog with a homozygous recessive dog (bb; a chocolate lab) If the black lab was BB, all of its offspring will be black (Bb) If the black lab was Bb, half would be black (Bb) and half would be brown (bb)

20 Testcross: Genotypes B_ bb Two possibilities for the black dog: BB or Bb Gametes B B b b Bb b Bb bb Offspring All black 1 black : 1 chocolate

21 Geneticists use the testcross to determine unknown genotypes
Mendel used testcrosses to verify that he had true-breeding lines of pea plants Mendel performed his experiments nearly 100 years before the discovery of DNA! The testcross continues to be an important tool of geneticists for determining genotypes

22 Mendel’s laws reflect the rules of probability
Mendel’s strong background in mathematics (and physics and chemistry…) served him well in his studies of inheritance He knew he needed large sample sizes The laws of inheritance reflect the probability of an event occurring The probability of having a girl: 1 in 2 The probability of rolling a 5 on a dice: 1 in 6 The probability of drawing a queen from a deck of cards: 4 in 52 (1 in 13)

23 Probability An event that is certain to occur has a probability of 1
An event that is certain not to occur has a probability of 0 When you flip a coin, the probability of getting heads (or tails) is 1 in 2 every time you toss the coin; independent of previous tosses!

24 Segregation and fertilization as chance events
Bb male Formation of sperm Bb female 1 2 B 1 2 b Formation of eggs B B B b 1 2 B 1 4 1 4 b B b b 1 2 b 1 4 1 4 F2 genotypes

25 Extra credit opportunity!!!
Try it at home… Toss a coin 100 times and record the outcomes; your answer should be close to ½ for heads and ½ for tails (if you are using a fair coin…) Submit your answers (and perhaps some photographic/video proof) for extra credit!!!

26 Genetic traits may be tracked
Individuals exhibiting a recessive trait would be homozygous recessive (carry 2 copies of the recessive allele) Individuals exhibiting a dominant trait, however, could be homozygous dominant (carry 2 copies of the dominant allele) or be heterozygous (carry 1 copy of the dominant and 1 copy of the recessive allele)

27 Genotype Genotype F_ ff W_ ww ee E_ Dominant Traits Recessive Traits
Freckles No freckles W_ ww Widow’s peak Straight hairline ee E_ Free earlobe Attached earlobe

28 Genetic disorders Genetic disorders may be inherited as a recessive or dominant trait Most human genetic disorders are recessive; most people who have recessive disorders are born to normal parents who are both heterozygous for the allele controlling the disorder In this way, the parents are carriers of the recessive allele, but are phenotypically normal

29 Offspring produced by parents who are carriers for a recessive trait
Normal Dd Normal Dd Parents D Sperm d Dd Normal (carrier) DD Normal Does this mean that deaf parents always have deaf children? D Eggs Dd Normal (carrier) dd Deaf d Offspring

30 It is said that everything should be tried once, except square-dancing and inbreeding….
It is relatively unlikely for 2 carriers of a rare, harmful allele will meet and mate However, the probability increases greatly if close relatives marry and have children A mating of close relatives, called inbreeding, is more likely to produce offspring homozygous for recessive traits

31 Genetic disorders Let’s take a non-human example…
Dog breeds that have been inbred for appearance frequently exhibit serious genetic disorders, such as weak hip joints, eye problems, etc. Endangered species frequently suffer from inbreeding (reduced numbers increase chances of close matings)

32 A case study: The Florida Panther
The Florida panther population once numbered in the 30’s in the 1990’s Close matings resulted in reduced sperm counts, heart defects, and low survival rates among kittens Introduction of the Texas Panther in recent years has yielded hybrids with a higher survival rate (controversial!)

33 Genetic disorders Why are most genetic disorders recessive?
Dominant alleles that cause lethal diseases are much less common than lethal recessives This is because the dominant allele cannot be carried by heterozygotes without it affecting them (and subsequently kill the embryo) In contrast, recessive alleles are continually carried from generation to generation by healthy (unaffected) heterozygous carriers

34 Genetic disorders Most dominant genetic disorders can be eliminated when it causes the death of an individual before he/she has a chance to mate (and pass along his/her alleles) A lethal dominant allele, however, can escape elimination when it does not cause death until a relatively advanced age Huntington’s Disease – degenerative disease of the nervous system does not appear until years of age (50% chance of inheriting it)


36 Three’s a crowd… Mendel was fortunate in that he chose characters for which there were only 2 alleles Many genes, however, have more than 2 alleles in the population More often than not, the inheritance patterns of a particular trait are more complex

37 Incomplete dominance In some allele combinations, dominance does not exist Instead, 2 traits are blended together to form a 3rd trait In snapdragons (a plant, not a cool dragon, unfortunately) when a red plant is crossed with a white plant, some offspring are red, some are white and some are pink!

38 Red RR White rr P generation Gametes R r F1 generation Pink Rr Gametes
2 R 1 2 r Sperm 1 2 R 1 2 r F2 generation RR rR 1 2 R Eggs Rr rr 1 2 r

39 Incomplete dominance In this case, heterozygous individuals exhibit a third phenotype, pink. The resulting pink flowers are Rr and can produce red, white or pink offspring of their own In the case of incomplete dominance, the phenotype does reveal the genotype for all traits!

40 Multiple alleles Multiple alleles exist for most genes
For example, the ABO blood group in humans involves 3 alleles of a single gene: A, B, and O An individual can have type A, B, O, or AB blood The A and B alleles are co-dominant; both alleles are expressed in heterozygous individuals

41 Blood Group (Phenotype) Genotypes Red Blood Cells O OO AO or AA A Carbohydrate A BO or BB B Carbohydrate B AB AB

42 Safe a life, give blood Blood group AB can receive blood from any blood type, but can only donate to AB Blood group A can receive blood from only A or O, but can donate to A or AB Blood group B can receive blood from only B or O, but can donate to B or AB Blood group O can receive blood only from O, but can donate to A, B, O or AB!

43 Blood type complications
In addition to blood ‘type’, our red blood cells may (or may not) have a protein known as the Rh factor Individuals without this factor have a “negative” blood type, while those with this factor have a “positive” blood type Problems can occur when an Rh- mother carries an Rh+ child, especially for children conceived after the birth of an Rh+ child

44 Multiple alleles No matter how many alleles for a given gene are in a population, a diploid individual will only have 2 alleles, one on each homologous chromosome Homozygous for the dominant allele recessive allele Heterozygous Genotype: P B a PP aa b Bb

45 The chromosome basis of inheritance
Mendel established his principles (laws) of inheritance long before mitosis and meiosis were understood, and longer still before chromosomes were ‘discovered’ The chromosome theory of inheritance states that genes occupy specific loci, or positions, on chromosomes and it is the chromosomes that undergo segregation and independent assortment during meiosis

46 Fertilization among the F1 plants
All round yellow seeds (RrYy) F1 generation R y r Y R r r R Metaphase I of meiosis (alternative arrangements) Y y Y y R r r R Anaphase I of meiosis Y y Y y R r r R Metaphase II of meiosis Y y Y y Gametes y Y Y y Y Y y y R R r r r r R R 1 4 ry 1 4 rY 1 4 Ry 1 4 RY Fertilization among the F1 plants F2 generation 9 :3 :3 :1

47 Genes on the same chromosome tend to be inherited together
The number of genes in a given cell is far greater than the number of chromosomes Each chromosome contains hundreds or thousands of genes Genes located close together on the same chromosome tend to be inherited together and are called linked genes Linked genes do not follow Mendel’s law of independent assortment

48 Experiment Purple flower PpLl PpLl Long pollen Observed offspring Prediction (9:3:3:1) Phenotypes Purple long Purple round Red long Red round 284 21 55 215 71 24

49 Not accounted for: purple round and red long
Explanation: linked genes Parental diploid cell PpLl PL pl Meiosis Most gametes PL pl Fertilization Sperm PL pl PL PL PL Most offspring PL pl Eggs pl pl pl PL pl 3 purple long : 1 red round Not accounted for: purple round and red long

50 Sex chromosomes and sex-linked genes
The X-Y system of sex chromosomes is only 1 of several sex-determining systems Insects have an X-O system; females have 2 X chromosomes, while males have only 1 (XO) Some organisms lack sex chromosomes altogether and sex is instead determined by chromosome number Other organisms have temperature-dependent sex determination!

51 Sex chromosomes and sex-linked genes
In addition to bearing genes that determine sex, sex chromosomes contain genes for characters unrelated to gender A gene located on a sex chromosome is called a sex-linked gene Sex-linked disorders typically affect human males, since they have only one copy of each chromosome

52 Sex-linked disorders Hemophilia is a sex-linked recessive trait
Hemophiliacs lack 1 or more proteins required for blood clotting, and bleed excessively when injured as a result Hemophilia is a caused by a recessive allele on the X chromosome Woman can be carriers, but rarely suffer from the condition……Why?

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