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Unformatted text preview: Week 1: Lecture 1 There were two handouts given out in the beginning of class (syllabus and Homework #1). The emphasis of the course will be to understand: What is a gene? How do genes work? How are genes passed from parent to child? How can two brown-eyed parents have a blue-eyed child? How does one perform genetic experiments (manipulate genes)? Genes are made of DNA but what is the connection between genes, DNA, and red hair, or cancer, or muscular dystrophy? We will examine genetics from many different angles. The course will be broken up into three parts: Mendelian Genetics- this will include the study of how genes pass from one generation to the next and what laws can be formulated regarding gene transmission; during this section we will discuss the patterns of inheritance - how two brown-eyed parents can have a blue-eyed child. There will be lots of vocabulary in this course. BIO340 is as vocabulary intensive as Spanish or Greek. Biology has its own language and if you do not understand the vocabulary, then you will not be able to understand the lectures or the homework. After Mendelian Genetics we will cover the Molecular Basis of Genetics- we will examine the relationship between the gene and DNA, genes and chromosomes, and DNA and chromosomes. How do genes function? How are genes regulated? How do we turn them on and off? What happens when we do not turn our genes on or off correctly? The last section that we will study is Population Genetics- we will study how genes flow in populations. There is a new set of rules to describe how genes behave in a population. We will take a historical perspective throughout the course to see how we know what we know today. It is not necessary and I won't ask you to memorize dates, but it is important to understand how we got to where we are today in the field of genetics, how we know what a gene is. It will be necessary for you to understand the experiments we will discuss and how we do science. You should know who did pivotal experiments, and be able to interpret the results of these experiments. Genetics is a very logical science and this course will be built on logic. You will get a better understanding of what is a gene. You will learn how to make a cross. We will compare DNA of different species. This is an exciting time to be in genetics. With the genome projects being completed on many different species, we are entering the third millennium of genetics. This is causing a change in the face of science and medicine. My goal is simple, to teach you genetics. Your goals are different. You have two: 1 st to learn genetics and 2 nd to perform well on the exams. Despite what you have heard, BIO340 is one of the most difficult undergraduate courses. Although last semester about 40% of students got an A or a B. Your grade in this class is proportional to the effort you put forth. It is your responsibility to decide what grade you want in this class and put in the time required to earn that grade. The rule of thumb for studying is 2 hours of studying the time required to earn that grade....
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This note was uploaded on 09/26/2008 for the course BIO 340 taught by Professor Pratt during the Spring '08 term at ASU.
- Spring '08