BIO 207 LECTURE 1.docx

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University of Alberta
Biology (Biological Sciences)
Lesley Harrington

BIOL 207 2014-01-06 Lec01 Some examples will be discussed in class that are not in textbook. From these experiments, you do not need to memorize details that are not directly related to genetics, but you may be asked to interpret similar experiments on exams. A. NOVADogs Decoded film clip (can be found on YouTube; details not on exam) a. dogs are 99.8% similar to wolves in genome sequence, so why is their behaviour so different? i. heredity or environment ? It must not be the environment, but rather the genetics that make a dog a dog and a wolf a wolf; social behaviour of dogs dogs are not domestic wolves  dogs must have evolved and received these innate attributes that tamed them to be more domesticated; ii. Everything you eat, everything you buy is unrecognizable in nature- it’s domesticated  not normally found in nature iii. How long does it take to turn a wolf into a dog (15,000 years)  breeding program began in 1959, iv. Foxes which neither reacted nor shyed away; foxes who were tamed were bred forward; foxes who showed affection to humans became the end result; v. 50 generations (50 years), foxes were made tame; three generations of selection was all it needed; foxes at birth needed human intention (innate); variation is already in the population vi. Blood samples from tame and aggressive are taken; tamer foxes are producing less adrenaline (less fear + less aggressive)  domestication made it tame; some of that specific breed (with low adrenaline) explain differences between the animals vii. Dogs to wolves in 8 weeks viii. Color of coat changed in the foxes; limbs and tails became shorter than their counterparts; tamed foxes began to look like dogs; if you just select for behaviour, the morphological changes just hang along get a lot of stuff for free when you select against aggression ix. When you choose against aggression, you favour juvenile development; more than one trait is controlled by these genes; x. If you freeze maturation, it will change a wolf into a friendly puppy 1. socialization experiment (note controls) 2. domestication experiment (note contrasting phenotypes) a. where does natural variation come from? b. how does this demonstrate heredity? b. domestication of foxes / wolves i. complex trait; only a few genes contribute to certain traits; perhaps there is a higher level regulator which controls everything 1. many genes involved 2. pleiotropy (one gene; many effects) 3. small variations may have large effects a. hormones b. developmental arrest c. genetic variation & selection explains diversity of life CHAPTER 1: B. Mendel: scientific study of heredity Why are things the way they are; ancient society knew that you could breed plants to get what you wanted; Mendel began to study this using pea plants; a. white flower trait can be inherited even from two purple flowers; there is some essence that is passed on from generation to generation b. particulate (not blending) inheritance; genetic information is conserved, even though you can’t see it  proved by the F2 generation; the essence of genetics is that they blend, but retain old characteristics; Mendel showed that this is NOT the case; genetic info is PARTICULATE; discrete units can be preserved but also hidden; c. genes are units of inheritance C. Avery, MacLeo
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