Chapter 1-Concepts in Biology

Chapter 1-Concepts in Biology - Chapter 1 Major Concepts in...

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Chapter 1:   Major Concepts in Biology Major Concepts in Biology 1. There is a  structural hierarchy  found  in all living things     (Ch.  2 - 8) 2. Each higher level in this structural hierarchy exhibits  emergent properties ” (i.e., the whole is equal to MORE than the sum of its parts)   (Ch.  2 - 8) 3. The cell is the basic structural and functional unit of life (Ch. 7 - 8) 4. DNA is the hereditary code of life      (Ch. 16 - 19) 5. There is always a  complementarity of structure and function         (most chapters) 6. Organisms continuously interact with their environment         (most chapters) 7. Survival depends on  homeostasis  which  is a dynamic process         (most chapters) 8. The living world is characterized by  diversity and unity (all chapters) The diversity is made more understandable by the  science of taxonomy 9. All living things evolve as they adapt to survive in a changing  environment;  evolution occurs through “natural selection” (Ch.  22-25) 10. Testable hypotheses are the hallmark of the  Scientific Method (all chapters) 11. Science influences technology; technology impacts on society (all chapters) 1 of 9
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1.     The Structural Hierarchy in Living Things Life exhibits a high degree of order and organization. Living things are organized into a hierarchy of structural levels,  wherein each higher level is built from components in the level below. Organism (most complex level) Systems Organs Tissues Cells (= first level to exhibit characteristics of “life”) organelles molecules atoms (simplest level) 2.  Each higher level in this hierarchy exhibits “ emergent properties .” In other words, with each step up the hierarchy novel (new)  properties emerge that were not present in the simpler levels of organization.  Simply stated: “The whole is equal to MORE than  the sum of its parts.” 3.  The cell is the basic structural and functional unit of all living things.   Living things exhibit all of the following characteristics: Boundaries : Every living organism must maintain its boundaries so that its internal environment remains distinct  from the external environment surrounding it. All cells are surrounded by a semi-permeable membrane that encloses its contents and  regulates the entry and exit of nutrients and wastes. Nutrition : Plants and animals require food for energy, growth, repair and proper body functioning. The life  functions concerned with obtaining and using food include:  ingestion, digestion, absorption and assimilation.
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