Tutor profile: Derrick L.
What are the consequences of an E6V mutation in hemoglobin?
The E6V mutation is a common genetic mutation that results in a different folding pattern in the hemoglobin. This change shows up at a larger scale as "sickle cell disease," named because of the severely curved appearance of red blood cells with this mutation. The implications of this mutation are that the affected red blood cells will be less able to bind oxygen.
What is the difference between dominant and recessive alleles?
First, recall that (depending at what level of biology you are covering) genes and combinations of genes are DNA sequences that determine characteristics that we can see on a larger scale, such as flower color or seed texture. Alleles are different forms of genes for the same trait that can be used to predict what we see at a larger scale. Dominant and recessive are used to describe alleles for traits that fall into distinct categories in Mendelian genetics (e.g. white flowers vs. purple flowers, rough seeds vs. smooth seeds). Then the difference between them is that if a dominant allele is present (generally denoted by a capital letter), the trait that we see will correspond to the dominant allele, regardless of whether a recessive is present. However, if a recessive allele (denoted by a lowercase letter) is present without a dominant allele, the trait that we see will correspond to the recessive allele. To further clarify, someone with two 'A' alleles will show the dominant trait, and someone with 1 'A' allele and 1 'a' allele will also show the dominant trait. However, someone with two 'a' alleles will show the recessive trait.
What is a derivative?
Put simply, the derivative of a function tells us how quickly the function is changing. The two main ways of thinking about derivatives are graphically and analytically, but to develop a more intuitive understanding, it may be easier to think graphically. If we are given the graph of a function, the derivative of the function at a given point can be determined from the tangent line at that point. Remember that tangent lines are lines that only touch the function at one point. If we can draw in the tangent line, the slope of this line is the derivative of the function at that point. As we travel along the function, this value can change.
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