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GR 7 Unit 5 - Genetics (Mar. 2 - Apr. 16)

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Essential Questions

How are new cells created?
Why do humans look like both of their parents?
Why are bacteria identical to their parent?


  • heredity - the passing of traits from parent to offspring
  • DNA - is a chemical inside the nucleus of cells, that contains information for an organism's growth and function (deoxyribonucleic acid)
  • chromosomes - a structure in a cell's nucleus, made of DNA, that contains hereditary material that is needed to carry out cell functions and make new cells; chromosomes come in pairs
  • gene - a section of DNA on a chromosome that determines the inheritance of a particular trait
  • mitosis - cell division
  • cell division - the process where the body divides a parent cell into two daughter cells with the same genetic material
  • Stages of mitosis - prophase, metaphase, anaphase, telophase
  • prophase - the chromatid pairs are now visible and the spindle is beginning to form
  • metaphase - chromatid pairs are lined up in the center of the cell
  • anaphase - the chromatids separate
  • telophase - the final step where cytoplasm is beginning to separate
  • asexual reproduction - a type of reproduction where a new organism is produced from one parent organism and has DNA identical to the parent organism
  • meiosis - the process through which the body produces reproductive cells
  • sexual reproduction - a type of reproduction in which two reproductive cells (usually an egg and a sperm) join to form a zygote, which develops into a new organism, with traits similar to but different from both the mother and father
  • reproductive cells - have half the number of chromosomes as other cells in the body
  • inherited trait - passed down from parents to offspring (e.g. hair color, eye color, height, etc.)
  • acquired trait - one that is gained or learned during the lifetime of an organism (e.g. basketball skills, ability to play the trumpet, scars)
  • allele - a form of a gene for a single trait and can be dominant or recessive
  • genotype - the genetic code for a trait
  • phenotype - the physical appearance of a trait
  • dominant - most important, powerful, or influential
  • recessive - heritable characteristics controlled by genes that are expressed in offspring only when inherited from both parents
  • heterozygous - describes an organism with two different alleles for a trait
  • homozygous - describes and organism with two alleles that are the same for a trait
  • Punnett square - used to determine the possible genotypes of offspring when given the genotypes of the two parents (i.e. if Tt is crossed with tt the offspring will have a genotype of either Tt or tt)

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