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1

biology

the science of hoe life works

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observation

the act of viewing life around us

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experimentation

a disciplined and controlled way of asking and answering questions about the world in an unbiased manner

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hypothesis

observations and the questions they raise allow us to propose tentative questions that are observations

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scientific method

observations > hypothesis > predictions > experiments/new observations > theory

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theory

a general explanation of the world supported by a large body of experiments and observations

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first law of thermodynamics

energy can neither be created nor destroyed- it can only be transformed from one form into another

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second law of thermodynamics

the degree of disorder in the universe tends to increase

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entropy

the quantified amount of disorder in a system

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cell

the simplest entity that can exist as an independent unit of life

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protiens

key structural and functional molecules that do the work of the cell- provide structural support and act as catalysts that facilitate chemical reactions

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RNA

ribonucleic acid

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transcription

the synthesis of RNA from a DNA template; copying of information from one form to another

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translation

after transcription, specialized molecular structures within the cell read the RNA molecule to determine what building blocks to use to create a protien

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central dogma

the pathway from DNA to RNA (specifically to form mRNA) to protein- describes the basic flow of information in a cell

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gene

the DNA sequence that corresponds to a specific protein product

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replicated

a feature of DNA that allows it to be easily copied, allowing genetic information to be passed from cell to cell or from one organism to its progeny

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mutations

errors in DNA that occur during replication

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plasma membrane

separates the living material within the cell from the nonliving envoirnment around it

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nucleus

houses the cell's DNA

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cytoplasm

discrete space that nucleus occupies within the cell

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prokaryotes

cells w/o a nucleus

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eukaryotes

cells with a nucleus

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Bacteria, Archaea, Eukarya

3 domains of life

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metabolism

chemical reactions that cells use to convert energy from one form to another and to build and break down molecules

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evolution

change over time

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envoirnmental variation

variation among individuals is sometimes due to differences in the environment

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genetic variation

differences in genes that are transmitted from parents to their offspring

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tree of life

the full set of evolutionary relationships among all organisms

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ecology

the study of how organisms interact with one another and with their physical environment in nature