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68 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
definition of biology
scientific study of life
basic characteristic of life
high degree of order
biological organization
heiarchy with structural levels each with emergent properties
levels of biological organization
biosphere>ecosystems>communities>populations>organisms>organs and organ systems>tissues>cells>organelles>molecules
components of cells
fundamental unit of structure and function of living things
functions of organisms either multicellular or unicellular
uptake and processing of nutrients, excretion of waste, response to environmental stimuli, reproduction
Multicullular organisms: 3 structural levels above the cell
tissues- similar cells grouped together
organs- several tissues coordinated
organ system- several organs
localized groups of organisms belonging to a community--- all the individals of a species living within bounds of a specified area. ex population of maple trees in a forest
populations of several species inhabiting a particular area.
all the living and nonliving things in a particular area that interact (soil, water, gases, light, trees, animals). the organisms and environment effect each other.
all the environments on earth that are inhabited by life
2 major processes controling an ecosystem:
1/ cycling of nutrients
2. flow of energy from sunlight to producers to consumers (often involves transformation of energy from one form to another, where some is lost to surroundings as heat)
most ecosystems producers are plants and other photosynthetic organisms that convert light energy into chem energy
organisms that feed on producers and other consumers
Chemical nutrients vs energy
chemical nutrients recycles within an ecosystem, energy flows through entering as light exiting as heat
organism's basic unit of structure and function, lowest level of structure that can perform the activities of life
major research focus of modern bio
understanding how cells work
all cells contain what at some point?
deoxyribonucleic acid or DNA, directs cell's activities
substance of gene, units of inheritance that transmit info from parent to offspring, directs development and maitenence of entire organism
structure of a chromosome
one long dna molecules with tons of genes arranged along the length
genes along the length of dna molecules....
encode the information for building the cells other molecules
Function of most genes
program cell's producion of proteins
links of DNA chains
one of 4 nucleotides (chemical bonding blocks) that encode information with chemical letter
sequence of nucleotides
codes for a specific protein w/ shape and function
involved in almost all cell activities, tools to build and maintain cell
genetic code
essentially the same in all forms of life, universal so it is possible to produce proteins only found in other organisms
library of genetic instructions that an organism inherits
enclosing every cell, regulate passage of material btwn cell and surroundings
2 basic types of cells
prokaryotic- microorganisms called bacteria and archaea, dna is not separated from cytoplasm in a nucleus and no membrane enclosed organelles
eukaryotic all other forms of life, more complex, subdivided by internal membranes into organelles
largest organelle
nucleus, contains chromosomes
system? examples of a biological system
combination of coomponents in a complex organization

examples: cells, organisms, ecosystems
emergent properties
IMPORTANCE OF STRUCTURAL ARRANGEMENT: moving up biological order properties emerge that are not present at lower levels. result from arrangements and interactions between components as complexity increases.

ex: thoughts and memories are emergent properties of a complex network of neurons. recycling of nutrients depends on network of diverse organisms interacting with each other and soil and air
reducing comple systems to simpler components

it is impossible to understand an organism without taking it part, but we cant fully explain a higher level of organization by breaking it down into its component parts
human genome project
sequencing of the genome of humans and other species
systems biology
tries to model dynamic behavior of whole biological systems so they can see how changing a variable effects the system
-- increased understanding of protein functions and sequencing of data makes systems biology more important
history of ecosystems
1960s elaborate models digramming interactions of species and nonliving components in ecosystem
3 key research developments that increased importance of systems bio
1. high throughput technology methods that can analyze materials quickly and produce huge amounts of data (like dna sequencing machines)
2. bioinformatics- huge databases from number 1 require software and mathematical models to process and integrate info.
3. interdisciplinary research teams- sys bio teams involve many scientists besiides biologists
regulatory mechanisms
ensure a dynamic balance in living systems
protein molecules that catalyze (accelerate) chemical processes within cells
- each enzyme catalyzes a specific chem reaction
- many times ractions are linked into chemical pathways, each step with its own enzyme
self regulationg biological processes
output or product of a process regulates that process
feedback inhibition
negative feedback, accumulation of an end product slows or stops process
positive feedback regulation
end product speeds up its own production example- platelets in damaged blood vessel
vertical and horizontal dimension of biology
vertical- atoms to viosphere
horizontal- diversity of life, organisms thoughout history
classifies species into heirarchial order
until past decade: 5 kingdoms
now 6 7 8 or even dozens of kingdoms because of comparisons of dna among organisms
bacteria, archaea, eukarya (higher than kingdoms)

bacteria and archae are prokaryotes
kingdoms in eukarya domain
plantae, fungi, animalia-- distinguished party by modes of nutrition (photosynth, decomposers, ingestion)
what unites prokaryoktes and eukaryotes
what explains similarities and differences among living things?
evolution in 1859 with on the origin of spcies by natural selection--
1. descent with modification- unity in kinship but diversity in modifications
2. mechanism for descent with modification was natural selection
Darwins 2 observations that lead to natural selection
individual variation among a population, and overpopulation and competition (more offspring than environment can support so they struggle to exist)

inferences-- 1. unequal reproductive success (better offpring from those best suited for environment) 2- evelutionary adaptation00 heritable traits that enhance survival and success increase in frequency
galapagos finches
adaptation to different environmental encounters--- 14 species of finch diversified from the ancester to exploit food sources on the islands
what connects all life?
long evolutionary history- shared ancestor for all living things
two types of exploration in science
discovery science- describes structure s and processes through observation and analysis of data
& hyptothesis science- explains nature
inductive reasoning
derive generalizations based on specific observations
heart of science, asking queions about nature, involves proposing and testing hypoth
deductive reasoning
general--> specific
extrapolate to a specific result we should expect if premises are true
--- predictions about what we shoudl see if hyp is correct

"if... then"
scientific hypothesis
answers a question
must be testable and falsifiable
-- frame two or more hypothesis and design experments to falsify them
scientific method
idealized process, very rarely followed rigidly
snake experiment
controlled, test the effect of one variable by cancelling out the effects of the other (brown were controls)
science seeks _______ for ______
natural causes for natural phenomena
broader in scope than a ypothesis-- general enough to generate many new specific hypoth that can be tested, support by more evidence, widely accepted, reject if new data comes about
range from lifelike reps to symbolic schematics
sharing of info in science
publications, seminars, meetings
changes because of more women in science
switch in focus of research
applies scientific knowledge for some specific purpose
- results from scientific discoveries applied to development of goods and services
- interdependent with science
- depends on human need
- difficult choices with other factors besides science
dna technology and viotechnology
- revolutionized the pharm industry
- important impact on agriculture and law