The fundamental life processes of plants and animals depend on a variety of chemical reactions that occur in specialized areas of the organism’s cells. As a basis for understanding this concept:
- 1d. Students know the central dogma of molecular biology outlines the flow of information from transcription of ribonucleic acid (RNA) in the nucleus to translation of proteins on ribosomes in the cytoplasm.
Genes are a set of instructions encoded in the DNA sequence of each organism that specify the sequence of amino acids in proteins characteristic of that organism. As a basis for understanding this concept:
- 4a. Students know the general pathway by which ribosomes synthesize proteins, using tRNAs to translate genetic information in mRNA.
- 4b. Students know how to apply the genetic coding rules to predict the sequence of amino acids from a sequence of codons in RNA.
- 4c. Students know how mutations in the DNA sequence of a gene may or may not affect the expression of the gene or the sequence of amino acids in the encoded protein.
- 4d. Students know specialization of cells in multicellular organisms is usually due to different patterns of gene expression rather than to differences of the genes themselves.
- 4e. Students know proteins can differ from one another in the number and sequence of amino acids.
- 4f. ***Students know why proteins having different amino acid sequences typically have different shapes and chemical properties.
The genetic composition of cells can be altered by incorporation of exogenous DNA into the cells. As a basis for understanding this concept:
- 5a. Students know the general structures and functions of DNA, RNA, and protein.
- 5b. Students know how to apply base-pairing rules to explain precise copying of DNA during semiconservative replication and transcription of information from DNA into mRNA.
- 5c. Students know how genetic engineering (biotechnology) is used to produce novel biomedical and agricultural products.
- 5d. ***Students know how basic DNA technology (restriction digestion by endonucleases, gel electrophoresis, ligation, and transformation) is used to construct recombinant DNA molecules.
- 5e. ***Students know how exogenous DNA can be inserted into bacterial cells to alter their genetic makeup and support expression of new protein products.