Introduction to Genetic Analysis 27

Introduction to Genetic Analysis 27 - 26 Chapter 1 •...

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Unformatted text preview: 26 Chapter 1 • Genetics and the Organism 23. In Norway in 1934, a mother with two mentally re- tarded children consulted the physician Asbjørn Følling. In the course of the interview, Følling learned that the urine of the children had a curious odor. He later tested their urine with ferric chloride and found that, whereas normal urine gives a brownish color, the children’s urine stained green. He deduced that the chemical responsible must be phenylpyruvic acid. Because of chemical similarity to phenylalanine, it seemed likely that this substance had been formed from phenylalanine in the blood, but there was no assay for phenylalanine. However, a certain bacterium could convert phenylalanine into phenylpyruvic acid; therefore, the level of phenylalanine could be measured by using the ferric chloride test. The children were indeed found to have high levels of phenylalanine in their blood, and the phenylalanine was probably the source of the phenylpyruvic acid. This disease, which came to bephenylpyruvic acid....
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This note was uploaded on 01/10/2011 for the course BIOL BIOL taught by Professor Johnson during the Spring '08 term at Aberystwyth University.

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