To regard man, the most ephemeral and rapidly evolving of all species,
as the final and unsurpassable achievement of creation, especially in his
present-day particularly dangerous and disagreeable stage of development,
is certainly the most arrogant and dangerous of all untenable doctrines.
If I thought of man as the final image of God, I should not know what to
think of God. But when I consider that our ancesters, at a time fairly recent
in relation to earth's history, were perfectly ordinary apes, closely related
to chimpanzees, I see a glimmer of hope. It does not require considerable
optimism to assume that from us human beings something better and higher
may evolve. Far from seeing in man the irrevocable and unsurpassable image
of God, I assert--more modestly and, I believe, in greater awe of the Creation
and its infinite possibilities--that the long-sought missing link between
animals and the really humane being is ourselves!
-Konrad Lorenz, On Aggression
Biology is the study of life on Earth.
Audesirk, Audesirk and Byers, Chapter 1, Many selections throughout
Today's musical selection
Sam Cooke "What
a wonderful world" ("Don't know much about biology...")
What is unique to life?
Cell membrane contains protoplasm and somehow inside, cells are "alive."
(1) Complex - Cells have very complex macromolecules (DNA, RNA, protein).
In general, entropy (disorder) increases [we will return to this point in
a later lecture]. However, in Biology, small systems are defined, enclosed
in cells, that defy this generalization
(2) Movement, Responsiveness (irritability, sensitivity, excitability)
(3) Development, Growth, Form
(4) Metabolism - exchange energy
*(6) Homeostasis (regulation)
Example#1 Thermostat, servo mechanism, negative feedback.
Example#2 Weight regulation 1 cookie/day = 25 lb/yr
*(7) Evolution is major unifying principle
Life on Earth is 3 1/2 billion yrs old (and presumably all organisms have
History from primordial "soup" of molecules to biology, extinctions,
*(8) Reproduction -
"Survival" in biology is to and reproduce and produce fertile
Example#1- One species definition: Reproduce, fertile offspring
Horse - donkey (differenty species) mate to produce the mule -- the mule
is sterile: Mule, (here is my late friend's dad proudly posing with his
Example#2- Consider this: so much energy is devoted to reproduction that
reproductive structures constitute most of the human diet. Oh? Well, grain,
fruit (and vegetables that are fruits), dairy products and eggs.
The virus story
To tell the next story, let us introduce reproduction in the bacteriophage
(a virus that "eats" bacteria). Is a virus alive? Compare the
terms "infectious" with "living." Is the virus the oldest
form of life because it is so simple? (Made up of just Protein and DNA)
No, it cannot be because it is a Parasite and therefore could not exits
until its host existed.
(Alfred Hershey & Martha Chase 1952 work) radioactive sulfur seen in
protein coat of bacteriophage, radioactive phosphorus seen in bacteria where
DNA is orchestrating the manufacture of new virus.
"Is it animal, vegetable or mineral"
- a question on an old quiz show called "20 questions"
Kingdoms (At one time, 2 kingdoms were proposed (plants and animals), but
there were problems, for instance some organisms have properties of both
kingdoms. Now 5 are generally accepted.
Sometimes more are also proposed. How can the number of kingdoms be subject
to debate? Classification is not an exact science.
Kingdoms and domains
Monera (prokaryotes) are very diverse (2 of the 3 domains)
These cells do not have a nucleus. The suffix "karyote" refers
to the nucleus, and comes up in words like "perikaryon" (the part
of a nerve cell near its nucleus) and "karyotype" (the chromosomal
constitution of a cell).
The other four kingdoms have eukaryotic cells.
Protista (single celled "plants" and "animals") are
also very diverse
Do they make their own food?
Autotroph vs. Heterotroph (self- other-feeder)
Food web (from ecology chapter)
Phylogeny vs Taxonomy
Taxonomy is sometimes called "Systematics" and is based on the
Linnean system (Linnaeus 1705-1778 botanist)
Kingdom - Phylum - Class - Order - Family - Genus - Species
(phylogeny and systematics.) Here, domain is more inclusive than kingdom
Genus - Species: binomial nomenclature
Phylum = Division for plants fungi bacteria
Homo sapiens people
Drosophila melanogaster fruit flies
Canis familiaris dogs
In phylogeny we try to draw conclusions (and diagrams) of how related organisms
There can be various levels of artistic license in such evolutionary diagrams.
Here is a display
at the Carnegie museum in Pittsburgh. It is actually a graph. Diversity
is on the X axis (abscissa). That diversity in this example is the location
on Earth. The Y axis (ordinate) is time with long ago on the bottom and
now on top and split up into epochs of the geological time scale (Eocene,
etc.). Of note is that animals lower in the diagram are not just "simpler"
animals of today. Rather, today's animals are only at the top, and some
further down may be extinct, for instance, horses in the New World until
they were re-introduced.
Such a diagram branches out, hence the term "divergent evolution,"
a concept so fundamental that you should see it now even though evolution
will be covered in detail in the last quarter of the semester. One very
fundamental concept is that of homology. The wing of a bird and the flipper
of a porpoise are homologous and are descended from the same common structure
that led to your arm and hand.
Molecular biologists borrowed this strategy and produce divergent evolution
diagrams of their own (at first much to the chagrin of the comparative anatomists).
Levels of analysis
element - molecule - organelle - cell - tissue - organ -
organ system - organism - population - biosphere
Questions used in 2007 & 2008 relating to this outline
These days, autotrophs are almost exclusively
I said that a phylogenetic diagram was like a graph. What is on the ordinate
(a) binomial nomenclature
(b) bacteria on the left, people on the right
(c) kingdom on the left, species on the right
(d) the independent variable
*(e) time from long ago to present
Comparative anatomy shows similarities in human and bird forelimbs, since
humans and birds had a common ancestor. The forelimbs are called
You look at an amoeba in the microscope. Where might you put it in a phylogenetic
diagram of eukaryotes?
(a) at the middle at the bottom.
*(b) at the left at the top.
(c) right next to Drosophila melanogaster.
(d) beside all the others that have the nitrogen-containing polysaccharide
(e) with ancient organisms.
In the food web, high level consumers (predators) would be considered to
(a) more evolved than anybody else.
(c) lacking in catabolic metabolism.
(d) higher in entropy than any other organism.
The mule was used as an example to show
(a) some organisms of the past are now extinct.
(b) the forelimbs of vertebrates are not homologous.
(c) the dangers of anabolic steroids.
(d) not all reproducing "organisms" are considered to be alive.
*(e) the horse and donkey are different species.
In the Hershey-Chase Experiment, phosphorus and sulfur were used because
phosphorus is found in ____________ while sulfur is found in ______________.
(a) Cell membrane, Lipids
(b) Vesicles, Proteins
*(c) DNA, Proteins
(d) Proteins, RNA
(e) Bacteria, Lipids
Why don't most people gain or lose a lot of weight rapidly?
*(a) They eat the right amount.
(b) They count calories rather than kilocalories.
(c) They adjust their caloric loss through the urine to compensate for overeating
(d) Antidiuretic hormone (ADH) regulates weight.
(e) Parathormone (PTH) mediates the storage of extra energy.
Terms like Homo sapiens
(a) demonstrate the concept of homology.
*(b) are derived from the Linnean system of taxonomy.
(c) tell you the phylogeny.
(d) tell us the kingdom and phylum in Latin.
(e) relate tissues to organs.
I said that the tree of life is like a graph. What is on the X-axis (abscissa)
of the tree of life?
A) Binomial nomenclature.
B) The species is on the left and the genus is on the right.
C) Catabolic is on the left and metabolic is on the right.
E) The dependent variable.
Disorder increases according to the second law of thermodynamics.
A) Homeostasis is the word biologists use for disorder.
B) This is exemplified by anabolic reactions.
*C) Although biology is complex, this law still applies to the whole universe.
D) Entropy is the fundamental unifying principle in biology.
E) Comparative anatomy was used to demonstrate that disorder applies to
Your lab partner tells you that the Paramecium cell you see in the
microscope is very primitive. You offer the following correction:
*A) They are present-day organisms with a 3 & 1/2 billion year geneology
just like you.
B) Viruses (not Paramecia) are primitive, but cells arose later (than
viruses) in the history of life.
C) Because they have photosynthesis, they must be very old.
D) Although Paramecia are prokaryotes without organelles, they are
E) Bacteriophage have infected those Paramecia.
What kind of an organism is a bacteriophage?
A) It is a eukaryote.
B) Scientists consider it to be a predator in the food chain.
C) It is an autotroph.
D) It is a bacterium.
*E) It is not an organism since it is not cellular.
Radioactive phosphorus vs. radioactive sulfur were used by Hershey and Chase
A) to identify membrane glycolipids.
*B) to show that DNA, not protein, is the hereditary macromolecule.
C) to diagnose brain tumors.
D) to show that water dissolves hydrophobic ions.
E) to show the age of fossils and rocks.
Untreated diabetic patients
*A) are the only people who excrete calories.
B) are the only people who have catabolic metabolism.
C) have resistance to malaria.
D) were classified by Linnaeus.
E) are protostomes.
In one table I showed you, it was claimed that bacteria and protists could
be either autotrophic or heterotrophic. This dichotomy applies to
A) whether the organism is diploid or haploid
*B) whether they make their own food.
C) presence of a nucleus.
D) embryonic development.
E) whether they are gymnosperms or tracheophytes.
Questions used in 2002 relating to this outline (as well as other outlines)
You were presented with the classification of the wolf (Animalia - Chordata
- Mammalia - Carnivora - Canidae - Canis - lupis). Which group would have
the most species in it?
What happens when bacteriophage T2 infects a bacterium?
(a) Phage RNA enters the cell.
*(b) Only viral DNA enters the bacterium.
(c) Only viral protein enters the bacterium.
(d) The entire virus, enzymes and membranes and all, enter.
(e) The virus injects a poison into the bacterium to kill it.
About how long ago did the first cells appear?
(a) 3.5 million years
*(b) 3.5 billion years
(c) after photosynthesis evolved
(d) not until there was sexual reproduction
(e) 1.5 billion years ago when eukaryotes came into existence
"Membership" in this group is sometimes defined by ability to
mate and bear fertile offspring:
Bacteriophage were used
(a) to obtain temperature resistant enzyme for PCR.
(b) to make a cDNA library.
(c) by Hershey and Chase to show that DNA but not protein was the hereditary
(d) to show that the lac operon is regulated by presence of lactose.
(e) for gene therapy.
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