SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment

SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment.

DNA is labeled as the genetic blueprint of life, simply because it contains the instructions that govern the development of an organism. DNA is made up of something called repetitive DNA, which is of particular use in forensic DNA analysis. Inside this region of DNA are unique repeating patterns that can be used to differentiate one person from another. These patterns are known as short-tandem repeats (STRs), they can be measured to define the DNA profile of an individual. One example of how DNA is used within forensic science is if a person touched an object or weapon, skin cells may have been left behind. SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment. This low-level DNA is sometimes referred to as “touch DNA”, low-level DNA samples are helpful when examining an object where retrieving a fingerprint would be difficult. Another example is liquid blood or blood stains that can be collected from a crime scene; forensic scientist can used the DNA from the blood samples to determine who blood is it to help solve a case. Forensic scientist can also collect and analyze DNA from hair samples that could be left behind or near a crime scene SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment. These small DNA samples are very helpful to forensic scientist in connecting missing pieces.


Population evolution is defined by the changes a population experience over time. These changes can affect all organisms within a population whether they are single microorganisms or multicellular organism. Over time, species that are more habitable for a specific environment survive while the weaker ones will die. This process of evolution creates species that will produce off springs that will be adapted to their environment; this growth is caused from natural selection. Charles Darwin was the first to explain natural selection. Microbial life first started billions of years ago, first with the prokaryotes and later on the eukaryotes. Microorganisms are microscopic organism that cannot be seen with the naked eye but these organisms makes up life on earth as we know it today, all living things on earth is made up from microorganisms. SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment One example of microevolution is colonial forms, this process allow unicellular protists to stick together as loose federations of independent cells. This transition creates true multicellular organism. Another example is the Flinch bird found on the Galapagos Island, these birds are found elsewhere throughout the world but the ones on the island had larger beaks because of the natural selection to their environment. Another example is the evolution of pesticide resistant insects. Some insects have developed antibiotic-resistant bacteria because of natural selection, these insects have a resistance to the pesticides that are used kill them and the pass this gene to offspring SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment.

Biological diversity evolution comprises all the millions of different species that live on planet Earth, as well as the genetic differences within species Biodiversity has a key role in maintaining healthy ecosystems and thereby sustaining ecosystem services to the ever-growing human population. It also refers to the multitude of different ecosystems in which species form unique communities, interacting with one another. SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment. One example of biological diversity evolution is the North American garter snake which lives mainly in the water but its closely related species lives mainly on land this shows the biological diversity evolution on close related species that have evolve differently. Another example is the wheat plant which is the world most cultivated plant, sexual selection in which females choose mates to reproduce based on color has contributed to biological diversity evolution. Another example is the breeding of the spotted skunks, the western spotted skunks breed in the fall while their closely relative that live in the east breeds late in the winter SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment.

Plant and animal evolution is defined as the process development of plants and animal. Plants have spread more successfully than animals. Most plants can survive for a long time as small seeds. Animals often have more specific requirements than plants. While the vast majority of plants are hermaphrodites (they have both male and female reproductive organs), most animals are unisexual. SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment. Most animals need certain plants or prey for food, so these must be present for them to survive. One example of plant evolution is the fern plant, because of evolution ferns developed vascular tissue and these tissues move nutrients throughout the plant and allow them to grow tall. Another example of animal evolution is the birds, the birds are reptiles that have evolve from a small lineage of a two legged dinosaur called the Theropods. Today birds are different from their ancestor because they have developed feathers to assist them during flight and have become toothless compared to their prehistoric ancestor. Another example is the evolution of primates to evolve into humans SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment. All humans can trace their origin to primates, through natural selection primates had developed characteristic to survive in their environment. Because of evolution humans have developed enlarge brains to function and an upright posture to walk.

Population growth is defined as the increase in number of individuals in a population. Population growth can be either positive or negative over time population growth can cause an imbalance between births and deaths. SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment. The human population has proven this statement because the human population is expected to increase for the next several decades. An example of population growth is found in bacterium, a single bacterium can divide every 20 minutes increasing its population. In 12 hours the bacteria can be in numbered in the billions. Another example is the population growth of trees, trees are mature in their growth so that means they would not populate as rapidly as other organism. Trees one matured can populate an area over time and contribute to that environment ecosystem. Another example is the human population; the human population is growing rapidly and is expected to continue growing for the upcoming years. Because of the ever growing human population there is a greater demand for the consumption and production of energy, food and goods SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment.

Biomes and ecosystem are unique; a biome is a major terrestrial or aquatic life zone, an ecosystem is the interactions between the living things and the nonliving things in a place. Biomes makes up most of the earths 75%, biomes are unique in that they contain ecosystems inside them. In an ecosystem, the plants, animals, and other organisms rely on each other and on the physical environment. An example of a biome and ecosystem is a lake, inside a lake in the photic zone microscopic algae known as phytoplankton, these organism are the food source for mainly all animals that inhabit the lake. SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment. Another example of biomes and ecosystem is the wetlands; these wetlands support the growth of aquatic plants and have a vast number of different species. Bird would use the wetlands as a resting stop during their migration period; other animals such as frogs use this environment as a nesting station for their eggs. Another example is the tropical rain forest. The tropical rain forest is unique in that it provides a habitat for many different kind of species from the monkeys inside the trees to vast numbers of different species of snakes to name a few. Tropical rainforest have many species of plants and trees that are food source and habitats for many animals that abide in that environment SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment.



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DNA in forensic science:
                Taking samples of DNA and analyzing them to determine if they come from the same individual is known as DNA profiling. DNA profiling is used today in such things like investigating murders, paternity testing, victim identification and evolution research.  First, DNA samples are collected and isolated. Next, selected sequences from each DNA sample are copied many times (amplified) to produce a large sample of DNA fragments. Finally, the amplified DNA samples are compared to other samples. All together, these steps provide information about which samples came from the same person and which did not. SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment.
DNA testing has been used in the O.J. Simpson murder trial. In that case, the DNA analysis proved that the blood in Simpson’s car belonged to the victims and the blood at the crime scene belonged to Simpson. DNA profiling can be used to identify victims.  After the World Trade towers collapsed, tissue samples from the site were matched to DNA profiles from tissue known to be from the victims.  If no samples were available, blood samples from close relatives where used to confirm identity through near matches. DNA can also prove innocence.  As of 2011, more than 270 convicted criminals in 34 states have been exonerated. In over a third of those cases, DNA profiling has also identified the real perpetrators.

Population evolution and microbial life:
                Nearly all life on Earth depends on bacteria and other microbial life in one way or another as life evolved from microorganisms. Individual organisms do not evolve during their lifetimes. The evolutionary impact is only apparent in the changes in a population over time. This process takes many years and is done with the help of natural selection. Population evolution can be seen all over the world. SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment. An example of this would be groups of individuals that have adapted to their surroundings, like the Tibetans. This is a population that has adapted to living in high altitudes. Their respiratory and cardiovascular systems have adapted to maintain better oxygen saturation in order to survive high up in the Himalayas.
It is believed that life began with prokaryotes whose cells lack nuclei. Within the next billion years, two distinct groups of prokaryotes, bacteria and archaea, developed.  About 2.7 billion years ago, photosynthetic prokaryotes split water molecules and released oxygen gas into the atmosphere and profoundly changed the Earth’s atmosphere.  The accumulation of oxygen in the atmosphere killed off many prokaryotic organisms. Among the survivors, a diversity of metabolic modes evolved, including cellular respiration. All this metabolic evolution occurred during the 2 billion years that prokaryotes had the earth to themselves.  Eukaryotic cells evolved from the prokaryotic community.  The mitochondria of our cells and those of every other eukaryote are descendants of those smaller prokaryotes, as are the chloroplasts of plants and algae.

Plant and animal evolution:
  The evolution of more complex cells launched a time of great diversification of eukaryotic forms. These new organisms were protists. Protists are mostly microscopic and unicellular. Examples would be algae, amoebas and paramecium. The greatest diversification of animals was the Cambrian explosion.  This colonization of land was a major milestone in the history of life. Plants and fungi together led the way about 500 million years ago. Plants transformed the landscape, creating new opportunities for all life forms. The evolutionary venture onto land included vertebrate animals in the form of the first amphibians.  Further evolution by natural selection led to reptiles and mammals. Among the mammals are the primates, which is the group that contains apes, monkeys and humans. SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment.

Population growth:
Populations size fluctuates depending on factors that affect the population. For individuals, populations may grow as people are born or decline as they move to another area or die. But there are also factors in nature that help regulate the population. A density dependent factor is a limiting factor whose intensity is related to the population density. An example of this is the competition for the same limited resources, like food or space. A density independent factor would be a population limiting factor whose intensity is unrelated to population density.  An example of this would be the effects of weather on species.  During ideal weather conditions, the population will flourish whereas under harsh weather conditions, the population will suffer a decline.

Biological diversity evolution:
It is no surprise that human civilization has had an impact on the evolution of biological diversity.  Everything from viruses to animals have been affected by man. One example of this can be seen in the evolution of bacteria that have become resistant to certain antibiotics. Penicillin antibiotics were among the first drugs to be effective against many bacterial infections though misuse has now made many types of bacteria resistant.  Another example would be the adaptation of animal species living and thriving amongst humans since the boom of the industrial age SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment.

Biomes and ecosystem:
A biome is a major terrestrial or aquatic life zone, characterized by vegetation type or the physical environment. Aquatic biomes, which occupy roughly 75% of the Earth’s surface, can be divided into two groups, freshwater biomes and marine biomes. Fresh water biomes typically have a salt concentration of less than 1% and fall into two broad groups; standing water, which includes lakes and ponds, and flowing water, which includes rivers and streams.  The difference in water movement results in differences in ecosystem structures.  Marine biomes consist of oceans, intertidal zones, coral reefs and estuaries and have a salt concentration of around 3%. A wetland is a transitional biome between an aquatic ecosystem and a terrestrial one.  The communities of plants, algae and animals are distributed according to the depth of water and distance from the shore. Terrestrial ecosystems are grouped into biomes primarily based upon vegetation type which largely depend on climate, with temperature and rainfall often being key factors.  Each biome is characterized by a type of biological community rather than a group of particular species.  Ecosystems are also influenced by human actions. The effects of global warming are disrupting the normal life cycles of some plants and animals.  An example of this is warmer temperatures affecting the rate of snow melting. The melting of the snow used to help provide water during the dry season, but with snow melting sooner, the dry season lasts longer which can have an impact on forest fires and thus creating even more damage to ecosystems SC160 Basic Biology Essay Assignment.