Gene Mutation: The Basic Mechanism for Generating Genetic Variability
While the life on this earth may have begun as RNA world, DNA is eventually the genetic material of all living organisms, from bacteria to humans. The only exception comes from some viruses with RNA genome, but then viruses themselves cannot be classified as true organisms. DNA is organized into discrete units, called genes, which not only control the particular characters of an organism but also maintain the genetic continuity as they are passed on from generation to generation. The genes are highly stable and thus have been responsible for maintaining the stability and continuity of a species. Implicit in this stability is the generation of variation, a critical parameter for biological evolution. One can talk of these variations at two levels: (1) The variation that takes place in a character and allows the differences to arise in the members of the same species. (2) The biological variations that accumulate in a population and guide the natural selection and thus the evolution.
KeywordsRepair Pathway Replication Fork Spontaneous Mutation Auxotrophic Mutation Base Analog
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