Genetic Inheritance and Mutation, science homework help

Mutations are changes that occur within the genes of an organism. Sometimes these mutations impact a single gene, while other mutations impact the number or structure of entire chromosomes. Because many mutations change just one tiny piece of information in one single piece of DNA, they usually do not cause any problems. For example, imagine if someone sent you a long email and accidentally misspelled the word “friend” as “freind.” You would still understand the email and would probably still even catch the original meaning – this is a good analogy for what happens with a point mutation, where just one part of a gene is changed.

However, sometimes a single mistake can make a big difference. Imagine if, while composing a long email, you accidentally select and delete an entire paragraph or perhaps auto-correct changes a critical word. You can imagine (and perhaps have even experienced) how such a mistake might cause great confusion and miscommunication.

Many genetic disorders are caused by changes to a single gene in the form of a point mutation or due to a chromosomal abnormality like a chromosome disorder. Sometimes these mutations are passed from one generation to the next, just like other harmless traits like eye color and blood type. These mutations may cause specific disorders, or they may predispose a person to a common disease like cancer or heart disease.

Learn about some basic patterns of inheritance by opening the chapter resources then selecting “Animations and Demonstrations.” Use the interactive labeled “Inheritance of Individual Traits.”

Watch the following the videos to learn more about genetics and the implications of our genetic knowledge:

Our Molecular Selves:…

Video transcript:

Ethical, Legal, and Social Implications of Genetic Knowledge

Video transcript:

During the week, select only ONE option (either Option I OR Option II)


  • Using what you learned from the Inheritance of Individual Traits animation, consider the following imagining that you have four children, and two of the four children also possess your characteristic. Meanwhile the other biological parent of your children does not possess the trait.
  • Describe a physical trait you possess that you could potentially pass on to your own children.
  • Do you think this trait could be dominant or recessive?
  • Based upon your response, describe why it would or would not be possible for this trait to “skip” a generation.
  • Patterns of inheritance within organisms like pea plants, fruit flies, mice, and others are somewhat easy to determine since their mating practices can easily be controlled. Apart from controlling who mates with whom, what other characteristics make species like these ideal for studying genetics?
  • What are some of the challenges when studying human inheritance of traits like the one you chose for this scenario?


  • Describe a health problem that you believe has a genetic component at least partially inherited. Would you be interested in having genetic testing to determine whether you carry a genetic mutation for a particular disorder or a genetic predisposition for a disease? Why/why not? What are the advantages and disadvantages of determining your predisposition?
  • Using the resources provided in the prompt and in the unit’s Web resources, explore the current state of research for the health problem you described above. If you did not identify an inherited health condition within your family, then choose a disease that interests you or impacts a friend or other family member. Focus only on one of the following as they relate to the genetics of the disease. Share what you learn regarding research into the disease and look for similarities between the diseases you and your classmates describe.
    • Cause
    • Testing/Screening/Prevention
    • Treatments/Therapies/Cures

Please make sure to read all the directions and only pick option one or option two this discussion should be 300-350 words thank you

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