DNA, Chromosome and Genetic Inheritance

DNA (Deoxyribonucleic Acid) is a complex molecule that contains all the information needed to build and maintain an organism. While chromosomes are thread-like structures located inside the nucleus of animals and plants and made up of protein and a single molecule of DNA. Genetic inheritance is a basic principle of genetics and it tells how characteristics are passed from one generation to the next generation till now and genetic inheritance occurs due to the genetic material in the form of DNA, being passed from parents to their offspring. When organisms reproduce, all the information for growth, survival, and reproduction for the next generation is found in the DNA passed down from each generation to another generation. As we can see from the definition of DNA, chromosome, and genetic inheritance, it is all related to the passing of genetic materials or characteristics from parents to offspring from generation to generation. Characteristics such as eye color, the shape of the nose, and the type of blood are all connected with the relation between DNA, chromosome, and also genetic inheritance. These genetic materials are inherited and the same as some types of diseases cause there are also diseases that are inherited through DNA, chromosomes, and genetic inheritance.

For further understanding so that it is easy to remember the concept of DNA, chromosomes, and genetic inheritance we can use the analogy of a city to better understand the relationship between the DNA molecules, chromosomes, and genetic inheritance. One DNA molecule which has the initial letter of the four bases of nucleotides of DNA which are A (Adenine), T (Thymine), C (Cytosine), and G (Guanine) as a room inside a house would be represented by one house on a street. A genetic inheritance would equal a whole street of houses. While a chromosome is all the streets in a neighborhood. Then a set of chromosomes (for example all of the human chromosomes) would be represented by a city made up of all different neighborhoods.

Chromosome abnormalities in human chromosome number, such as deficiencies of chromosome number, additional or defects inside the body can cause the offspring to get diseases and most of it is inherited from the parents to the offspring because the human chromosome number is related to the DNA, chromosomes and genetic inheritance. Thus, the passing of genetic materials causes the diseases to be inherited from parents to the offspring. But, some diseases might not be inherited from the parents but it might be due to mutations of the genetic materials. For example, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) can be inherited, but usually, it appears in people with no family history of the disease. With inherited diseases, the cause is a change in the genes, called a mutation. The change in the DNA is considered in a mistake in making a protein. It is either the protein is actually not formed properly, or it is not made at all if the instructions are cut short by the genetic change.

There are so many diseases that are inherited by the offspring generation such as breast cancer. Women who are diagnosed with breast cancer usually have a family history of breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and other cancers. But, most people who develop breast cancer did not inherit a genetic mutation linked to breast cancer and have no family history of the disease. They are substantially more likely to have a genetic mutation linked to breast cancer if they have any blood relatives such as sisters, mothers, or grandmothers on either your mother's or father's side of the family who had breast cancer diagnosed before or at age 50. But still, if one family member has a genetic mutation linked to breast cancer, it does not mean that all family members will have it as it is just a precaution step to avoid and prevent the disease from getting worse. So it is very important for every each people in your family member to know and to take a test to make sure none of them have breast cancer and if they have early step to cure the disease can be taken as it also can lead to death.

Next, another disease that is related to DNA, chromosomes and genetic inheritance is Hemophilia A. Hemophilia is an inherited disease, most commonly affecting males, that is characterized by a deficiency in blood clotting. The responsible gene is located on the X chromosome, and since males inherit only one copy of the X chromosome, if that chromosome carries the mutated gene then they will have the disease. Females are usually the second after males cause they are usually normal, copies of the gene on their other X chromosome, so they capable of passing on the disease without experiencing its symptoms. Thus, to those male students, it is very important for you to know deeper about this disease as the percentage of males getting this disease is higher than females.

Other than that, another disease that is related to DNA, chromosome, and genetic inheritance which mostly are passed by the parents to offspring generation by generation such as Sickle-Cell Anemia where Sickle cell anemia is a blood disease that affects red blood cells. Normal red blood cells are round. For those people with sickle cell anemia, hemoglobin a substance in red blood cells becomes defective and causes the red blood cells to change shape. People with sickle cell anemia inherit the disease, which means that the disease is passed on to them by their parents as part of their genetic inheritance. Parents could not give sickle cell anemia to their children unless they both have the faulty of hemoglobin in their red blood cells. For example, to understand this disease those who have normal blood will have round shape blood while those who have Sickle-Cell Anemia will have different shapes of blood such as crescent moon shapes.

In conclusion DNA, chromosome, and genetic inheritance are connected to each other as genetic inheritance are parts of DNA that contain the code for a specific protein that functions in one or more types of cells in the body and chromosomes are structures within the cells that carry a person’s genetic materials obtain from the parents. There are a many more diseases that are classified as inherited from the parents such as Muscular Dystrophy a group of inherited diseases that damage and weaken your muscles over time, Retinitis Pigmentosa a genetic disorder of the eyes that causes loss of vision a rare progressive disorder that is characterized by the appearance of unusually accelerated aging (progeria) and also Huntington disease a progressive brain disorder that causes uncontrolled movements, emotional problems, and loss of thinking ability. Thus, the inheritable disease is sometimes very dangerous and need to be treated to avoid fatalities or at least reduce the pain or discomfort feeling caused by the disease.

07 July 2022
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