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Flashcards in Mutations (T5) Deck (5):

Both genetic engineering and selective breeding depend on there being change and variation in the genetic material. This is caused by mutations. What are mutations?

Any change in the genetic material.

They occur naturally.


How can a mutation be passed onto the next generation?

If it is present in the sex genes.


Most mutations are either harmful or irrelevant to an individual, but in what situations can they be beneficial?

They cause variations and variations are important to the survival of a species.


Briefly explain the problem faced with antibiotics and resistant bacteria..

The mutation of some bacteria, making them resistant to antibiotics.

In the 1940's penicillin was seen as a 'wonder drug' but in 10 years one type of bacteria had become resistant to it.

Since then new types of antibiotics have been developed to deal with the mutated bacteria, however each time a new antibiotic is produced some bacteria become resistant to it because they have changed a tiny part of a gene.

These are known as 'MRSE' bacteria and they are now resistant to all but one type of antibiotic.


In very basic terms, what actually happens in a mutation?

There is a change in the sequence of bases in DNA.

This either causes a different protein to be made or it blocks the production of the protein completely.

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