Comprehension Questions

Answers to questions and problems preceded by an asterisk will be found at the end of the book.

1. Outline some of the ways in which genetics is important to each of us.

" 2. Give at least three examples of the role of genetics in society today.

3. Briefly explain why genetics is crucial to modern biology.

" 4. List the three traditional subdisciplines of genetics and summarize what each covers.

5. When and where did agriculture first arise? What role did genetics play in the development of the first domesticated plants and animals?

" 6. Outline the notion of pangenesis and explain how it differs from the germ-plasm theory.

" 7. What does the concept of the inheritance of acquired characteristics propose and how is it related to the notion of pangenesis?

" 8. What is preformationism? What did it have to say about how traits are inherited?

9. Define blending inheritance and contrast it with preformationism.

10. How did developments in botany in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries contribute to the rise of modern genetics?

How did developments in cytology in the nineteenth century contribute to the rise of modern genetics? Who first discovered the basic principles that laid the foundation for our modern understanding of heredity?

13. List some advances in genetics that have occurred in the twentieth century.

Briefly define the following terms: (a) gene; (b) allele; (c) chromosome; (d) DNA; (e) RNA; (f) genetics; (g) genotype; (h) phenotype; (i) mutation; (j) evolution.

What are the two basic cell types (from a structural perspective) and how do they differ? Outline the relations between genes, DNA, and chromosomes.

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