Difference Between Chromosome Mutation and Gene Mutation

Mutations are alterations that occur in organisms’ genetic material, and they take place due to various reasons. Chromosome mutations and gene mutations are two types of mutations and they vary from each other mostly in the magnitude of the modification.

Chromosome mutation is a significant alteration of an organism’s chromosomes, where either the structure or number of chromosomes is altered. There are three types of chromosomal mutations which include inversions, deletions, and duplications. All chromosomal mutations affect the number, and the structure of chromosomes and eventual syntheses of protein and gene expressions.

Gene mutations are alterations of an organism’s genetic material, which mainly is an alteration in the sequence of nucleotide in a particular gene. There are two main types of gene mutations: frame shift mutations and point mutations. Gene mutation may result in alteration of the structure or the number of the whole chromosome, which could eventually cause chromosomal mutations.

Chromosomal mutation is an alteration in many genes whereas gene mutations are an alteration in the nucleotide sequence. Also, chromosome mutation is a serious alteration while Gene mutation is considered as a small-scale alteration. Finally, chromosomal mutations are hard to correct while gene mutations are sometimes easily corrected.






The Eighth Continent: Zealandia


Under the waves of Pacific Ocean lies a giant land that once was called a continent: Zealandia, geologists say.

Zealandia is 5 million square kilometers big, including  New Zealand and New Caledonia. A team of scientists from New Zealand, Australia, and New Caledonia argue in the March/April issue of GSA Today that this single crust is significantly separated from Australia.

“If you could pull the plug on the world’s oceans, then Zealandia would probably long ago have been recognized as a continent,” says team leader Nick Mortimer, a geologist at GNS Science in Dunedin, New Zealand.

“The results are pushing us to rethink how broadly we can or should apply the established definition of geological continental landmasses,” says Patricia Durance, a mineral geologist at the GNS Science office in Lower Hutt, New Zealand.

The researchers concluded Zealandia ought to be one of the continents. Zealandia didn’t break away from another continent, as it was thought to be in the past. The India-sized continent should be treated as the seventh continent of the world.

“If the elevation of Earth’s solid surface had first been mapped in the same way as those of Mars and Venus – which lack the arbitrary datum of opaque liquid oceans – we contend that Zealandia would, much earlier, have been investigated and identified as one of Earth’s continents,” the researchers noted.

“This is not a sudden discovery but a gradual realization; as recently as 10 years ago we would not have had the accumulated data or confidence in interpretation to write this paper.”

The scientists said classifying the area as one continent wasn’t just a matter of putting “an extra name on a list”.

“That continent can be so submerged yet unfragmented makes it a useful and thought-provoking geodynamic end member in exploring the cohesion and break-up of continental crust.”

reference: http://www.newshub.co.nz/home/world/2017/02/zealandia-nz-could-be-sitting-on-the-world-s-newest-continent.html

Codon and Anticodon

Everything about plants and animals is defined by a series of information in DNA and RNA. The information is laid out in RNA or DNA strand in a characteristic sequence for each living organism. The nitrogenous base arrangement is the information system in RNA and DNA, where these bases (Adenine, Thymine, Uracil, Cytosine and Guanine) offer unique sequence to make characteristic proteins that have unique shapes. Those proteins define the characters and traits of the living organisms. Proteins are made from amino acids. Each amino acid has a three-base unit that is well-matched with the bases in nucleic acid strands. If one of these base threesomes is the codon, the other is the anticodon.

A codon is a grouping of three consecutive nucleotides in a RNA or DNA strand. All the RNA and DNA have nucleotides sequence as codons. A nucleotide has one of A, C, T/U, or G. The three consecutive nucleotides consist of a sequence of nitrogenous bases that determines the compatible amino acid during protein synthesis.

Anticodon is the arrangement of nitrogenous bases in tRNA which is attached to amino acids. It is the equivalent nucleotide sequence to the codon in mRNA. They are attached to amino acids and determine the amino acid that binds to the synthesizing protein strand next.




3 Things YOU Don’t Know about YOURSELF


brain에 대한 이미지 검색결과

“People live without knowing”, a famous quote mentioned by an ancient philosopher, may seem to be a little absurd. However, through the years of development of psychology, researchers realized that this quote is far from false, but is correct. People exclaim that the study of psychology started ever since ancient Greek’s philosophers thought about humans. Chronologically speaking, psychology was studied by scholars for over thousands of years. However, ironically, people understood less than 17% of themselves: the brain.

Yes, we know what it’s made of (77% water, for a start) and how much it weighs (about 3 pounds). We also know that it has somewhere in excess of 80 billion neurons, each one connected chemically and electrically with 10,000 others, creating the world’s most complex network, with more interconnections than there are stars and planets in the Milky Way. But we don’t know how the brain works. Astoundingly, what we don’t understand the most is actually what we are always doing; we just don’t know.


  1. What is consciousness?

Without question, conscious awareness is the most astounding — and most perplexing — aspect of the human brain. Consciousness allows us to experience and reacts to our environment in an apparently self-directed way.

We have our own private thoughts, feelings, opinions, and preferences, and these traits allow us to figure out the world and operate within it.



But we are still quite a ways off from understanding how the brain produces phenomenal experience. Neuroscientists cannot explain how incoming sensations get routed around such that they can be translated into subjective impressions like taste, color, or pain. Or how we can form a mental image in our minds on demand. Scientists think it has something to do with the way the sensory parts of the brain are linked to midbrain structures. Consciousness may also arise from, in the words of Marvin Minsky calls the “Society of Mind.” As Minsky notes, “Consciousness is a word that you use to not discuss the 40 or 50 different processes that are going on at various times…” In extent, there are lots of theories that attempt to understand humans’ consciousness. Some scientists have even proposed quantum effects. But ultimately, people haven’t really got a clue.


  1. How do we store and access memories?

Like a computer’s hard drive, memories are physically recorded in our brains. But we have no idea how our brains do this, nor do we know how this information gets oriented in the brain.

Also, there isn’t just one kind of memory. We have both short-term and long-term memory. There’s also declarative memories (names and facts), and nondeclarative (muscle memory). And within our long-term memories, we have”flashbulb memories” memories where we’re able to remember the precise details of what we were doing during momentary events. To perplex things further, different parts of our brain perform different memory tasks.

Neuroscientists think that memory storage depends on the connection between synapses and the strength of associations; memories aren’t so much encoded as discrete bits of information, but rather as relations between two or more things. In other terms, memories of an event may be stored in a matrix of interconnected neurons in our brains. However, these are also just theories, so theories.



  1. How much of our personality is determined by our brain?

An old “nature versus nurture” debate, this topic is a conundrum that’s difficult to quantify. Some scientists, like Steven Pinker, argue that we’re all born with genetic predispositions that influence our psychologies. A mind has no innate traits, and that most of our individual preferences, if not all, are socially constructed. It’s difficult to tell where the effects of genes start and where they end, particularly as they’re either reinforced or suppressed by social experiences. Epigenetics, in which gene expression is either paused or activated according to environmental circumstances, complicate the issue even further. But in a way, the nature versus nurture debate is moot; the brain is a constant work in progress, a sponge that’s perpetually feeding off the environment.


How Genes Direct Protein Production

Most genes have the information that is needed to make proteins. The process in which genes help in the production of protein is complex and regulated within the cell. It consists of two main stages: transcription and translation. Both stages are called gene expression.

During transcription process, the information contained in a DNA of a gene is transferred to a molecule that is known as RNA in the cell nucleus. The type of RNA that receives the information for creating a protein is referred to as mRNA because it carries the information from the DNA, outside the nucleus into the cytoplasm.

The second step, translation, takes place in the cytoplasm. During the process of translation, the mRNA interacts with a ribosome. The main function of a ribosome is to “read” the sequence of mRNA bases. Normally, each sequence of the three mRNA bases code for one specific amino acid. Protein production continues and ends when ribosome meets a “stop” codon (an mRNA sequence that does not code for amino acids)

The flow of information from a DNA to mRNA, and finally to protein is one of the most important principles of molecular biology. Sometimes, it is referred to as the “central dogma.





On rough seas, the stability of ships can be a matter of life and death. If a ship loses balance, then it could shrink, which would effect the life of all the people who are on the ship. To prevent these ships from upsetting, a new ship-stabilizing mechanism called ‘Gyroscope’ is now applied to many ships.

It’s actually hard to call this technology a “brand new tech.” because it was already invented in 1850s by a Frenchman Leon Foucault. A gyroscope is a spinning wheel, called the rotor, that rotates around an axis. The rotor is mounted between two gimbals that turns around their own axes. This means that when pressure is exerted on the gimbals, the rotor is unaffected, making it a useful tool to measure compass headings and pitch, roll, or yaw angles—useful for sailors trying to find the horizon on a foggy morning, or in a spacecraft which headed to the ISS.

Other than ship-stabilizing and guiding, gyroscope is used in many important tools like the Hubble Space Telescope, race cars, airplanes, and cell phones. Pokemon Go’s augmented reality also uses gyroscope.

In a boat, the natural rocking of the water moves the spinning gyroscope, producing pressure known as ‘torc.’ As the boat rolls, the gyro tilts fore and aft. This motion comes from the stabilizers which use the energy produced by pushing the spinning gyroscope off its vertical axis to correct the boat’s heel. It’s basically the same principle with a surfer adjusting his body’s position on his board to match a wave’s surface

The problem, though, is that until recently, gyroscopic stabilizers were too heavy and big that it weighted about 100 tons because their power depended on their size and mass. Huge space was needed to take stabilizer, so only huge ships could apply it. However, In 1970s new kind of stabilizer called ‘fin stabilizer’ was invented for the small ships. It looked like fins, and they moved up and down like wing airplane so that it can push the water and stabilize the ship. But fins, though effective, required a lot of power, and changed the direction of the ship a bit.

Researchers are still working on scaling the stabilizer down so that every boats in every sizes can use it. Researchers revealed their next goal that is to make a stabilizer for 20-foot boats. While the early adapters might be luxury ships, the company is seeing an uptick in commercial adoption too.

Widespread usage of stabilizers, Semprevivo hopes, will help improve safety conditions on the sea. “We have an opportunity,” Semprevivo says, “to see what our product can do.”

Reference : http://www.popsci.com/stabilizing-gyroscopes-cure-motion-sickness-save-lives

Differences Between mRNA and DNA

The main similarity between a mRNA (messenger ribonucleic acid) and a DNA (Deoxyribonucleic acid) is that both are found inside the cells of all living organisms. Despite this similarity, the two have various differences as highlighted below:

The structure of a DNA is composed of deoxyribose which is a pentose sugar while on the other hand; the structure of mRNA is composed of ribose sugar.

DNA’s nitrogenous bases possess thymine as its pyrimidine while uracil forms the base for mRNA’s pyrimidine.

DNA is positioned at the nucleus of a cell while mRNA moves to the cytoplasm of the cell during protein synthesis and attaches itself to a ribosome so as to facilitate the process of protein synthesis.

In terms of structure DNA has two strands while mRNA has one strand.

DNA has a very long lifespan as compared to that of mRNA.

mRNA conveys genetic information which is in form of genetic codes from the DNA to the cytoplasm of a cell. It also performs a complementary function to one of the two strands found in the structure of a DNA.