Tuesday, April 10, 2012

I is for Inheritance Patterns

There can be many forms of inheritance (maternal inheritance is the only one I can think of at the moment) but I am going to stick to single chromosome inheritance. A lot of popular knowledge on this subject has to do with different diseases that a person can inherit, such as X-linked and autosomal. The inheritance pattern that I would like to go over is epigenetic inheritance. This is a pattern in which a modification occurs to a gene or chromosome that alters gene expression. There are two types that I studied, which are dosage compensation and genomic imprinting. Dosage compensation is my favorite :)

The purpose of dosage compensation is to even out the sex chromosomes. Females have two X's and males have an X and a Y. The Y chromosome is considerably smaller, which means there are much less genes on it. To make everything even, one of the females X chromosomes is condensed. This turns off that X chromosome, and under a microscope it appears as a small black spot in the cell's nucleus (called a Barr Body).

Source: http://glencoe.mcgraw-hill.com/sites/dl/free/0078664276/281029/ccq_ch13_q3.gif

What do you think some of the side effects are for females when one X chromosome is "turned off"? How do you think scientists were able to prove this?


Tara Tyler said...

but what about the mutant genes!
i love your scientific theme!

Gossip_Grl said...

Nice post on the inheritance gene. Each of my grandchildren look like identical twins of my own children. I jokingly say that it is the mothers curse of "I hope you have kids that act just like you" which I know it isn't

Tracy said...

goodness gracious..what a way to procrastinate? I don't even find that complex of things to research when I'm wasting time :)
But I do find it interesting...my son looks so much like me, I look like my mother and my mothers looks like my grandmother...inheritance genes? we must have had something!

Rebecka Vigus said...


Anonymous said...

thanks for having blog like this :)