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Learning objectives

  • Define gene and genotype and differentiate genotype from phenotype
  • Describe chromosome structure and packaging
  • Compare prokaryotic and eukaryotic chromosomes
  • Explain why extrachromosomal DNA is important in a cell

Thus far, we have discussed the structure and function of individual pieces of DNA and RNA . In this section, we will discuss how all of an organism’s genetic material—collectively referred to as its genome —is organized inside of the cell. Since an organism’s genetics to a large extent dictate its characteristics, it should not be surprising that organisms differ in the arrangement of their DNA and RNA.

Genotype versus phenotype

All cellular activities are encoded within a cell’s DNA. The sequence of bases within a DNA molecule represents the genetic information of the cell. Segments of DNA molecules are called gene s, and individual genes contain the instructional code necessary for synthesizing various proteins, enzymes, or stable RNA molecules.

The full collection of genes that a cell contains within its genome is called its genotype . However, a cell does not express all of its genes simultaneously. Instead, it turns on (expresses) or turns off certain genes when necessary. The set of genes being expressed at any given point in time determines the cell’s activities and its observable characteristics, referred to as its phenotype . Genes that are always expressed are known as constitutive genes ; some constitutive genes are known as housekeeping genes because they are necessary for the basic functions of the cell.

While the genotype of a cell remains constant, the phenotype may change in response to environmental signals (e.g., changes in temperature or nutrient availability) that affect which nonconstitutive genes are expressed. For example, the oral bacterium Streptococcus mutans produces a sticky slime layer that allows it to adhere to teeth, forming dental plaque ; however, the genes that control the production of the slime layer are only expressed in the presence of sucrose (table sugar). Thus, while the genotype of S. mutans is constant, its phenotype changes depending on the presence and absence of sugar in its environment. Temperature can also regulate gene expression . For example, the gram-negative bacterium Serratia marcescens , a pathogen frequently associated with hospital-acquired infections, produces a red pigment at 28 °C but not at 37 °C, the normal internal temperature of the human body ( [link] ).

A photo of an agar plate with pink cells on the left and one with beige cells on the right. Both plates are labeled S. marcescens. The pink culture was grown at 28 degrees; the beige culture at 37 degrees.
Both plates contain strains of Serratia marcescens that have the gene for red pigment. However, this gene is expressed at 28 °C (left) but not at 37 °C (right). (credit: modification of work by Ann Auman)

Organization of genetic material

The vast majority of an organism’s genome is organized into the cell’s chromosomes , which are discrete DNA structures within cells that control cellular activity. Recall that while eukaryotic chromosomes are housed in the membrane-bound nucleus, most prokaryotes contain a single, circular chromosome that is found in an area of the cytoplasm called the nucleoid (see Unique Characteristics of Prokaryotic Cells ). A chromosome may contain several thousand genes.

Questions & Answers

write the life cycle of HIV
Firomsa Reply
describe the internal and external structure of prokaryotic cell in terms of there appearance and functions
Lenia Reply
compare and contrast similar structures found in prokaryotic and eukaryotic cells
Lenia
control of microorganisms
ISTEFAZUL Reply
how can a doctor treat a person affected by endospore forming bacteria in his/her wound?
Mambo Reply
a 28 years old woman come to your clinic with complain of fever painful genital blisters which express clear fluid when ruptured burning sensation around the bristers what is the diagnosis?
Ramadhani Reply
genital herpes caused by a virus called herpe simplex virus
Doris
what is the reference between selective medium and differential medium?
Tony Reply
the micro flora of air is transient why
Princess
Hello.... Am new here
essien Reply
welcome essien
Muhammad
welcome essien
Beka
classification of gram positive
lissa Reply
classify gram positive
lissa
catalase test is done to differentiate between staph and strep. as staph is catalase positive while strep is catalase negative then staph is differentiate further on coagulase positive and coagulase negative. staph aureus is coagulase positive while staph epidermidis is coagulase negative.
Muhammad
gram positive staph is further differentiated on sensitivity test and manitol salt fermentation test while gram positive strep is differentiated on hemolysis pattern
Muhammad
more about gramm positive
lissa
please
lissa
ok
Blessing
am back any gist
Blessing
taxonomy
Rahul
can i use the graph of bacterial growth for my master's thesis?
Christoph Reply
facultative anaerobic bavteria gives uniform turdibity in nutrient broth why?
Princess Reply
oils and waxes are not sterilized in autoclave
Princess
what is the function of paraffin
Muhammad
@ MAHI because they can grow all over the media from surface to the bottom as they can utilize oxygen or conduct fermentation in its absence.
Online
2.@MAHI Autoclave uses steam under pressure. The steam cannot penetrate through oil and wax. Thus, dry heat sterilization is preferred than autoclave .
Online
thnku
Nadiya
how nutirent agar can converted into blood agar
Princess
thank you
Princess
take a nutrient agar ........and add 5ml blood and put in it ...........!
Nadiya
nutrient agar +blood 5ml+ distilled water =blood agar .
Nadiya
mixed wellllll
Nadiya
hi
Rahul
why agar is not a neutrient source?
Shimul
because it's a general purpose agar only use for growing bacteria
Richa
way is antigen
opaleye
what is antigen
opaleye
antigen is a foreign body that cause activation of antibody?
ASNAKE
Antigen is a toxin or other foreign substance which induces an immune response in the body, especially the production of antibodies.
Shimul
thanks for that
opaleye
what is pharmacology
Luyenu
a science that studies about the drug
ASNAKE
hello ever one
Sayid
y
Abdul
Work hard
Anigor
y
Abdul
thanks alot
Luyenu
What is the major different between gram positive and gram negative bacteria.
Asikur
bacteria kya hai
Mala
content of their cell wall
Doris
koi mujhse basic microbiology ki study k Lea book suggest kro .
Richa
Harley prescott
Vikas
what are the five predisposing factors of opportunistic infections
Asher Reply
1. long term exposure to diseases, that the body immunity weakens.
prosper
2. Nature Of some diseases to weaken body immunity such as, AIDS.
prosper
3. Use of immuno-suppresive drugs.
prosper
anyone... need a hand here 🙋😞
prosper
Low immune is the major cause eg for kaposis sarcoma
Davismith
suitable conditions e.g temp,
Muhammad
what os gnormal flora
kifayat Reply
morphological and genetic classification of bacteria
Potter Reply
what is the morphogical
Bupe
h
Sudhir
morphologycal is defined as relating to the branch of biology that deals with the form of living organisms,and with relationship between their structures.
Nadiya
relating to the form or structure of things .
Nadiya
what is the meaning of lessions
oluwa
i am frim Afghanistan.
wahidullah Reply
iam from iraq
Haidar
and i'm from pakistan
Muhammad
Nice
Amina
what's about the qualification
Muhammad
Hlo
Asiya
Hmm
Number
Almustafa Muhammad from Nigeria
Mujtafa
am ustaz Abdulsalam from Ghana
ustaz
am Bupe Chifita from Zambia
Bupe
what is microbiology
Bupe
is the study of invisible micro organism
Mujtafa
microbiology is the study of very too small organisms which we can't see with naked eyes ......in other words ....study of microorganism is called microbiology.
Nadiya
Hello! How Can Microorganisms Be Isolated From The Skin?.. 5 ways if possible. (briefly)
prosper
from skin swabbing is the prefer method worldwide
Muhammad
thanks Muhammad Nauman very much!
prosper
hi
Meek
hi Meek
prosper
are there any other ways pals?
prosper
hi prosper
Meek
hello Meek Mild.
prosper
Any question or ideas, Meek?😊
prosper
and if a patient have any blister or abscess on the skin then first cut the blister or abscess. inside material is taking by syringe.
Muhammad
in case of fingernail or toenails simply cut a small piece of nail and culture on the appropriate media at a required temperature and time
Muhammad
Again, thanks Mr. Muhammad! I appreciate the help.
prosper
you welcom prosper 😊
Muhammad
what are the media use for skin swab?
Sieh-Mlanwin
blood and macckonkey mostly usededia for skin bacteria
Muhammad
used media*
Muhammad
@ SIEH mostly fungal infection occurs in skin so SDA ( Sabouraud Dextrose Agar) or MEA ( Malt extract agar) are common.
Online
thanks
Sieh-Mlanwin
Microbiologicam source of vitamins
Bachi Reply
what do you mean?
Md
that's example?
Md
hi everyone
Muhammad
such as. c/s media
Md
hmm hlw
Md
just tell me about that ?
Md
where are u from
Muhammad

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Source:  OpenStax, Microbiology. OpenStax CNX. Nov 01, 2016 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col12087/1.4
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