BIO 311c Chapter 1

BIO 311c Chapter 1 - BIO 311c Chapter 1 Evolution the...

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BIO 311c Chapter 1 Evolution the Overarching Theme of Biology The core theme is evolution-the one idea that makes sense of everything we know about living organisms Along with the diversity among organisms there is also some shared features Evolution-the idea that organisms living on earth today are modified descendants of common ancestors Similarities are because they have come from a common ancestor and the differences have occurred along the way Theme: New properties emerge at each level in the biological hierarchy Divide the enormous range into different levels of biological organization o Biosphere-consists of all the environments on earth that are inhabited by life: most regions of land, most bodies of water, and the atmosphere for several km o Ecosystems- consist of all living thing in a particular area along with all the nonliving components of the environment with which life interacts: such as a deciduous forest, grasslands, deserts, and the ocean’s coral reef. All the ecosystems make up the biosphere o Communities-the entire array of organisms inhabiting a particular ecosystem is the biological community. In a forest it is made up of trees, plants, animals, fungi, and microorganisms each called a species o Populations-consists of all the individual of a species living within the bounds of a specified area o Organisms-individual living things o Organ and Organ Systems-exploring the architecture of the more complex organisms such as a leaf on a tree. Organs carry out a particular function in the body which are also organized into organ system s (human digestive system) o Tissues-the next scale down, in a leaf it is the tissues that carry out photosynthesis. o Cells-each tissue is made up of cells. In multicellular organism there is a division of labor among specialized cells. On plant cells there are tiny chloroplasts o Organelles-chloroplasts are organelles the various functional components that make up cells
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o Molecules-chemical structure consisting of two or more small chemical units, atoms. Chlorophyll makes the leaf green absorbs sunlight converts light energy into chemical energy, food. Emergent Properties From the above list we can see that novel properties emerge at each step called emergent properties. These are due to the arrangement and the interactions of parts as complexity increases Example-If a serious head injury disrupts the intricate architecture of a human brain the mind may cease to function properly even though all of the brain parts are present. Our thought and memories are emergent properties of a complex network of nerve cells The unrivaled complexity of biological systems makes the emergent properties of life especially challenging to study The Power and Limitations of Reductionism It is hard to analyze things such as a disected animal who no longer functions and a cell reduced to its chemical ingred. Is no longer a cell, but that is the only way to analyze Reductionism-the reduction of complex systems to simpler components that are more
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BIO 311c Chapter 1 - BIO 311c Chapter 1 Evolution the...

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