Physical Anthropology, Evolution, & Genetics

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Theory
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set of hypotheses that have been rigorously tested & validated, leading to establishment as generally accepted explanation of specific phenomena
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Biocultural approach
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scientific study of interrelationship between what humans have inherited genetically & culture
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Evolutionary biology
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specialty within field of biology; study of process of change in organisms
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Demography
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Study of population’s features & vital statistics, including birth rate, death rate, population size, & population density
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Habitat
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Specific area of natural environment in which organism lives
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Forensic anthropology
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scientific examination of skeletons in hope o identifying people whose bodies they came from
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Linguistic anthropology
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study of construction, use, & form of language in human populations
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Biological (physical) anthropology
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study of evolution, variation, & adaptation of humans & their past & present relatives
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Catastrophism
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doctrine asserting that cataclysmic events, rather than evolutionary processes are responsible for geologic changes throughout Earth’s history
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Sociolinguistics
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science of investigating language’s social contexts
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Anthropology
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sutdy of humankind, viewed from perspective of all people & all times
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Archaeology
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study of historical or prehistorical human populations through analysis of material remains
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Artifacts
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material objects from past cultures
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Scientific law
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theory that becomes absolutely true
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Hominids
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group of extinct & living bipedal primates in family Homindae
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Empirical
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verified through observations & experiment
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Nonhoning canine
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upper canine that isn’t sharpened against lower 3rd premolar
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Genetic drift
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random change in allele frequenct from 1 generation to next with greater effect in small populations
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Gene flow
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admixture, or exchange of alleles between 2 populations
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Material culture
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part of culture that’s expressed as objects that human use to manipulate environments
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Adaptations
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change in physical structure, function, or behavior that allow an organism or species to survive & reproduce in given environment
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Culture
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learned behavior that’s transmitted from person to person
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Blending inheritance
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outdated, disreputed theory that phenotype of offspring was uniform blend of parents’ phenotypes
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Morphology
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Physical shape & appearance
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Gemmules
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Proposed by Darwin; units of inheritance, supposedly accumulated in gametes so they could be passed onto offspring
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Cultural anthropology
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study of modern human societies through analysis of origins, evolution, & variation of culture
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Geology
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Study of earth’s physical history
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Genus
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group of related species
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Evolutionary synthesis
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unified theory of evolution that combines genetics with natural selection
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Adaptive radiation
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diversification of ancestral group of organisms into new forms that are adapted to specific environmental niches
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Primates
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group of mammals in order of Primates that have complex behavior, varied forms of locomotion, & unique suite of traits, including larger brains, foreward-facing eyes, fingernails & reduced snouts
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Fossils
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Physical remains of part or all of once-living organisms, mostly bones & teeth, that have become mineralized by replacement of organic with inorganic molecules
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Uniformitarianism
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theory that processes that occurred in geologic past are still at work today
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Mendelian inheritance
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basic principles associated with transmission of genetic material, forming basis genetics, including Law of Segregation & Law of Independent Assortment
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Population genetics
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specialty within field of genetics; focuses on changes in gene frequencies & effects of those changes on adaptation & evolution
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Microevolution
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small-scale evolution that occurs from 1 generation to next
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Stabilizing selection
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selection against extremes of phenotypic distribution, decreasing genetic diversity for this trait in popultion
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Spontaneous mutations
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random changes in DNA that occur during cell divison
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Sickle-cell anemia
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genetic blood disease in which red blood cells become deformed & sickle shaped, decreasing ability to carry oxygen to tissues
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Reproductive isolation
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any mechanism that prevents 2 populations from interbreeding & exchanging genetic material
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Positive selection
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process in which advantageous genetic varients quickly increase in frequency in a population
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Point mutations
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replacements of single nitrogen bases & another base, which may or may not affect amino acid for which the triplet codes
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Macroevolution
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Large-scale evoution that occurs after hundreds or thousands of generations
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Klinefelter’s syndrome
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chromosomal trisomy in which males have extra X chromosome, resulting in XXY condition; affected people typically have reduced fertility
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Induced mutations
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mutations in DNA resulting from exposure to toxic chemicals or radiation
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Huntington’s chorea
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rare genetic disease in which central nervous system degenerates & indiidual loses control over voluntary movements, with symptoms often appearing between ages 30-50
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Hardy-Weinberg Law of Equilibrium
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mathematical model in population genetics that reflects relationship between frequencies of alleles & genotypes; it can be used to determine whether population is undergoing evolutionary changes
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Gene pool
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all genetic information in breeding population
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Frameshift mutation
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change in gene due to insertion/deletion of 1 or more nitrogen bases, which causes sibsequent triplets to be rearranged & codons to be read incorrectly during translation
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Founder effect
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accumulation of random genetic changes in small population that has become isolated from parent population due to genetic input of only few colonizers
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Exogamous
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population in which individuals breed only with nonmembers of population
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Endogamous
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population in which individuals breed only with other members of population
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Disruptive selection
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selection for both extremes of phenotypic distribution; may eventually lead to speciation event
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Directional selection
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selection for 1 allele over other, causing allele frequencies to shift in 1 direction
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Deme
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local population of organisms that have similar genes, interbreed & produce offspring
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Balanced polymorphism
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situation in which selection maintains 2 or more phenotypes for specific gene in population
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Admixture
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exchange of genetic material between 2 or more populations
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Zygote
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cell results from sperm’s fertilization of ovum
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Trisomy
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condition in which additional chromosome exists with homologous pair
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Translocations
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rearrangements of chromosomes due to insertion of genetic material from 1 chromosome to another
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Translation
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2nd step of protein synthesis, involving transfer of amino acid by tRNA to ribosomes which are then added to protein chain
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tRNA
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-transfer RNA -molecules that are responsible for transporting amino acids to ribsosomes during protein synthesis
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Transcription
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1st step of protein synthesis, involving creation of mRNA based on DNA template
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Structural proteins
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proteins that form organism’s physical attributes
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Structural genes
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genes coded to procude particular products rather than for regulatory proteins
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SNPs
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-single nucleotide polymorphisms -variations in DNA sequence due to change of single nitrogen base; aka point mutation
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Ribosomes
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organelles attached to surface of endoplasmic reticulum, located in cytoplasm of cell; site of protein synthesis
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RNA
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-ribonucleic acid -fundemental structural component of ribosome
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Regulatory genes
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genes that determine when structural genes & other regulatory genes are turned on & off for protein synthesis
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Polymorphism
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presence of 2 or more seperate phenotypes for certain gene in population
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Polygenic
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1 phenotypic trait that’s affected by 2 or more genes
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Pleitropy
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1 gene that affects more than 1 phenotypic trait
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Noncoding DNA
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sequence of gene’s DNA that are not coded to produce specific proteings & are excised before protein synthesis
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Mitosis
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process of cellular & nuclear division that creates 2 identical diploid daughter cells
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mRNA
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-messenger RNA -molecules that are responsible for making chemical copy of gene needed for specific protein for the transcription phase of protein synthesis
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Meiosis
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production of gamtese through 1 DNA replication & 2 cell division, creating 4 haploic gametic cells
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Law of Segregation
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-Mendel’s 1st law -asserts that 2 alleles for any given gene are inherited, one from each parent; during gamete production, only 1 of 2 alleles will be present in each ovum or sperm
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Law of Independent Assortment
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-Mendel’s 2nd Law -asserts that inheritance of 1 trait doesn’t affect inheritance of other traits
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Karyotype
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characteristics of chromosomes for individual organisms or species
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Heritability
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proportion of phenotypic variability that’s due to inheritance rather than environmental influence
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Haplotypes
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group of alleles that tend to be inherited as unit due to their closely spaced loci on single chromosome
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Haploid
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cell that has single set of unpaired chromosome, half of genetic material
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Haplogroups
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large set of haplotypes, that may be used to define population
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Genomics
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branch of genetics that studies species’ genomes
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Genome
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complete set of chromosomes for an organism or species tat represents all inheritable traits
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Gametes
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sexual reproductive cells (ova, sperm) that have haploid number of chromosome & that can unite with gamete of opposite sex to form new organism
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Free-floating nucleotides
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nucleotides that are present in nucleus & are used during DNA replication & mRNA synthesis
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Diploid
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cell that has full complement of paired chromosomes
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Cross-over
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process by which homologous chromosome partially wrap around each & exchange genetic info during meiosis
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Codons
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sequences of 3 nitrogen bases carries by mRNA that are coded to produce specific amino acids in protein synthesis
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Codominance
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2 different alleles that are equally dominant; both are fully expressed in heterozygous phenotype
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Coding DNA
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sequences of gene’s DNA hat are coded to produce a specific protein & are transcribed & translated during protein synthesis
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Autosomes
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all chromosomes that occur in pairs in all somatic cells
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Antigens
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substances that stimulate immune system antibody production
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Antibodies
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molecules that form as part of primary immune response to presence of foreign substances; attach to foreign antigens
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Taxonomy
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classification of organism’s info system that reflects degrees of relatedness
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Systematics
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study & classification of living organisms to determine evolutionary relationship with 1 another
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Species
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group of related organisms that can interbreed & produce fertile, viable offspring
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Paleontology
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studuy of extinct life-forms through analysis of fossils
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Natural selection
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process by which some organisms preferentially survive & reproduce, thereby increasing frequencey of those features in popoulation
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Lamarckism (inheritance of acquired characteristics)
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theory of evolution through inheritance of acquired characteristics in which organism can pass on features acquired during lifetime
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Pandemic
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infectious disease spreading across wide region (across continents, worldwide)
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Carolus Linnaeus (Carl von Linne)
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-laid foundations for binomial nomenclature -father of modern taxonomy
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Jean-Baptiste Lamarck
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-founder of inheritnace of acquired characteristics -lamarckism
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Charles Lyell
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-author of Principles of Geology -popularized concept of uniformitarianism
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James Hutton
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-father of modern geology -came up with idea of uniformitarianism
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Thomas Malthus
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-wrote Essay on the Principle of Population -said that populations would grow to outnumber amount of resources available -pessimistic/skeptic view of humanity
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Alfred Russell Wallace
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proposed theory of evolution through natural selection, which prompted darwin to publish views of natural selection & evolution
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Selective pressure
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any cause that reduces reproductive success in portion of population
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Human Genome Project
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scientific research project determining sequence of chemical pairs that make unp DNA & mapping genes of human genome
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Modern synthesis of evolution
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-union of ideas that give accepted account of evolution
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Linguistics
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study of human language
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Endemic
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disease maintained in 1 population with no need for external inputs

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