DNA Technology, Classification and Diversity

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  • DNA Technology, Classification and Diversity
    • Clarifying Evolutionary Relationships
      • New/improved technologies can result in new discoveries being made and the relationships between organisms being clarified
      • Genome sequencing- Entire base sequence of organisms DNA can be determined. DNA base sequence of one organism compared to another.
      • Closely related species have higher % similarity in DNA base order
      • Has clarified relationship between skunks and members of Mustelidae family. Skunks were classified in Mustelidae until DNA sequence revealed to be significantly different. Classified into Mephitidae
    • Comparing Amino Acid Sequence
      • Related organisms have similar amino acid sequences in protein
      • Cytochrome C short protein found in many species. More similar amino acid sequence of Cyto C, more closely related two species are
    • Immunological Comparisons
      • Similar proteins will bind to same antibodies.
      • If antibodies to human version of protein added to isolated samples of other species
      • Any protein thats like human one will also be recognised by that antibody
    • Assessing Genetic Diversity
      • Estimates of genetic diversity used to be made by looking at frequency of measurable or observable characteristics in a population
      • Different alleles determine different characteristics so a wide variety of each characteristic indicates a high number of alleles i.e. a high genetic diversity
      • Different alleles of same gene have slightly different DNA base sequences.
      • Comparing DNA base sequences of same gene in different organisms allows scientists to find out how many alleles of that gene that there are in that population
      • Different alleles will produce slightly different mRNA base sequences and may produce proteins with different amino acid sequences, which can also be compared
      • New technologies can be used to give more accurate estimates of genetic diversity within population or species. Also allow genetic diversity of different species to be compared more easily


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