Advances in Genetics
By Alaina Gracey
Ever since it was discovered, mankind has been steadily gaining knowledge about genetics (or the study of heredity). Heredity is the natural passing of traits (AKA genes), which are physical characteristics that naturally pass from parents to child though birth. What trait shows in a child depends on "alleles" (the different forms of a gene), there are two types of alleles, "Dominant" and "Recessive". The dominant allele ALWAYS shows in a child while the recessive allele does not.
More Info on "Alleles"
Scientists have discovered that these genes are in the form of extremely tiny strands of atoms known as DNA (Dioxyribo Nucleic Acid). They look like twisted ladders, or as scientists refer to as "Double Helix", and they twist and fold like spaghetti inside the nucleus of a cell. DNA is made up of four main elements, Admine, Cytosine, Guanine, and Thymine.
Over the years scientists from around the world have been finding ways to alter genetic codes. Most of these range from simply finding out what the child of a red flower and purple flower will be to mixing genetic codes to make glow-in-the-dark cats and other crazy examples. Some scientists have been able to use DNA limbs and some even plan to attempt to clone a mammoth!
Genetics definitely have their ups and downs. On one side of the spectrum we can do incredible things that make our world a better place. Scientists have found ways to genetically modify animals and even a few people to better fight diseases or have further developed mental and athletic capabilities, this emphasized in the movie Gataca.