Monday, January 6, 2020

Dna, Clues And The Cheetah s Speed And Hurdles - 1235 Words

â€Å"In DNA, Clues to the Cheetah’s Speed and Hurdles,† by Barbara S. Moffet is an article published in the New York Times Science. This article fascinated me when I first read it because the topic not only perfectly aligned with what we have covered in class so far, but the story is the epitome of the power of genetics, genomic diversity, mutations, and natural selection playing in the ecosystem. In the article, Moffet introduces a study done by scientists at the Theodosius Dobzhansky Center for Genome Bioinformatics at St. Peterburg State University In Russia collaborated with BGI-Shenzhen in China and the Cheetah Conservation Fund. It was to analyze the entire genome of the cheetah by using blood samples from a cheetah known as Chewbaaka and six other cheetahs from Namibia and East Africa. Interestingly, the complete sequencing of the genome of cheetahs uncovered many interesting facts about cheetahs, including their impoverished genetic diversity, history of their population bottlenecks, and many mutations that led to their unique physiology and characteristics as one of the fastest animals existing in the current ecosystem. Genetic diversity in an animal is the total number of genetic characteristics in the genetic makeup of a species, and it allows the population to adapt to the changing environment. Therefore, the more variation an animal contains, the higher chance it has the alleles that enable them to cope more successfully in the nature. However, through the genome

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