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Lecture 1

BIO152H5 Lecture 1: BIO152 Lecture 1-Science and Biology


Department
Biology
Course Code
BIO152H5
Professor
Maria Arts
Lecture
1

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BIO152 Lecture 1: Science and Biology
OUTLINE: What is covered in this lecture?
-Defining biology
-Properties of living organisms
-Levels of biological organization
-Unifying themes in biology
-Classifying the diversity of life
-Biology is a science: the scientific method
-Experimentation and hypothesis testing
What is biology?
-Studying living organisms.
-Studying life, scientific study of life.
-Study of the biodiversity of life (variety of life in the world).
-Inquiry about the nature of life.
What is life?
-Living organisms share several basic properties.
1. Order (Cellular organization)- cell, tissue, organ, system, organism.
2. Energy processing/metabolism.
3. Regulation.
4. Reproduction.
5. Growth and development (inheritance and genetic control)
6. Response to the environment.
7. Evolutionary adaptation.
Theme: New Properties Emerge at Each Level in the Biological Hierarchy
-Biology is organized into a hierarchy of levels.
-Each higher level contains novel properties not present at the simpler level of
organization.
Level Examples Special Consideration
Ecosystem Rain forest, desert, fresh
water lake front, digestive
tract of animal for bacteria
Includes all living organisms
and non-living matter such as
air, water and minerals as
well as heat (temperature) and
pressure
Community All species in an ecosystem Only includes living things
from bacteria, to fungi, to
plant, to animal and
accompanying viruses
Population All individuals of a single
species in a given area
Includes only individuals
from a specific species such
as a plant, an animal, or
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BIO152 Lecture 1: Science and Biology
microbes
Organism One single individual Serves as a representative of
the species and describes
overall form and function of
an organism (can be
multicellular)
Organ System A specialized functional
system of a multicellular
organism
The nervous system or
immune system of an animal
Organ A specialized structural
system of an organism
The brain or the thymus of an
animal
Tissue A specialized substructure of
an organ
The nervous tissue and
epithelial tissue are both part
of the brain
Cell A single cell A neuron, a skin cell, a root
cell, bacteria, yeast,
paramecium
Macromolecule A polymer such as a protein,
DNA, polysaccharides or fat
Macromolecules are the
functional and structural
building blocks of cells and
their organelles
Molecule A single small molecule
(often building block of an
macromolecule) such as an
amino acid, nucleotide,
monosaccharide or fatty acid
Molecules are the smallest
unit of biological systems;
they can be studied for their
chemical and physical
properties and are of
particular interest for their
role they play in a metabolism
and signaling
Addressing the Complexity of Biological systems
-Reductionism- The approach of study where you reduce complex systems to simpler
components.
-Systems in biology: an approach that focuses on a whole biological system.
-Study interactions among the system’s parts.
-A change in one variable can affect many.
-Ultimate aim: to answer large-scale questions.
Theme: Organisms interact with one another and with their physical environment.
-The environment consists of abiotic (non-living) and biotic (living) factors components.
Therefore, the abiotic and biotic factors are extremely important in analyzing the
relationship of the organism with the environment.
-Organisms live off each other.
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BIO152 Lecture 1: Science and Biology
-Production of food (food chain).
-Reproduction.
Theme: Life requires energy transfer and transformation.
-Moving, growing, reproducing, and the other activities of life are work, and work
requires energy.
Theme: Structure and Function are correlated to all levels of biological organization.
-Structure=function.
Theme: The cell is the organism’s basic unit of structure and function
-Cell: a highly structured compartment.
Cell Theory
-Proposes that all organisms are made of cells and all cells come from pre-existing cells.
Modern Cell Theory
-All living organisms are made up of one or more cells.
-All cells arise from pre-existing cells.
-The cell is the fundamental unit of structure and function in all living organisms.
-Energy flow (metabolism) occurs in cells.
-Cells contain hereditary information.
Theme: The continuity of life is based on heritable information
-All living organisms are what they are due to their genetics.
Theme: Feedback Mechanisms Regulate Biological Systems
-Negative: you are stopping a process; you need to have negative feedback.
-Negative feedback- regulatory mechanism in which a ‘stimulus’ causes an opposite
‘output’ in order to maintain an ideal level of whatever is being regulated.
-Positive: you keep making products.
-Example: When you are sick, you vomit to get rid of the toxin.
Evolution- The core theme of biology
-Theory of evolution: heritable characteristics of species change overtime.
-Evolution: genetic structure.
-Evolution occurs when individuals with certain heritable traits produce more offspring
that individuals lacking these traits.
Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection
-1858: Darwin proposed that all species are related by descent from a common ancestor.
-Species are related to one another, but change overtime: descent with modification.
-Natural selection explains how evolutionary changes occur.
-Natural selection: Nature or the environment selects for certain traits among naturally
occurring variable traits in a population.
Unity and Diversity
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