BSCI 105 Lecture 2 Themes

BSCI 105 Lecture 2 Themes - Biology is the scientific study...

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Unformatted text preview: Biology is the scientific study of Life Life defies a simple, one-sentence definition Life is recognized by what living things do Figure 1.3 Order Evolutionary adaptation Response to the environment Reproduction Growth and development Energy processing Regulation Themes connect the concepts of biology Biology consists of more than memorizing factual details Themes help to organize biological information Evolution, the Overarching Theme of Biology Evolution makes sense of everything we know about living organisms Organisms living on Earth are modified descendents of common ancestors Theme : New properties emerge at each level in the biological hierarchy Life can be studied at different levels from molecules to the entire living planet The study of life can be divided into different levels of biological organization The biosphere Communities Populations Organisms Ecosystems Organs and organ systems Cells Cell Organelles Atoms Molecules Tissues 10 m 1 m 50 m Emergent Properties Emergent properties result from the arrangement and interaction of parts within a system Emergent properties characterize nonbiological entities as well For example, a functioning bicycle emerges only when all of the necessary parts connect in the correct way The Power and Limitations of Reductionism Reductionism is the reduction of complex systems to simpler components that are more manageable to study For example, the molecular structure of DNA An understanding of biology balances reductionism with the study of emergent properties For example, new understanding comes from studying the interactions of DNA with other molecules Systems Biology A system is a combination of components that function together Systems biology constructs models for the dynamic behavior of whole biological systems The systems approach poses questions such as: How does a drug for blood pressure affect other organs? How does increasing CO 2 alter the biosphere? Theme : Organisms interact with their environments, exchanging matter and energy Every organism interacts with its environment, including nonliving factors and other organisms Both organisms and their environments are affected by the interactions between them For example, a tree takes up water and minerals from the soil and carbon dioxide from the air; the tree releases oxygen to the air and roots help form soil Figure 1.6a Chemical energy (a) Energy flow from sunlight to producers to consumers Sunlight Producers absorb light energy and transform it into chemical energy....
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This note was uploaded on 01/29/2012 for the course BSCI 105 taught by Professor Jensen during the Fall '07 term at Maryland.

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BSCI 105 Lecture 2 Themes - Biology is the scientific study...

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