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Ch 16: Mendelian Genetics & Mechanisms of Heredity

About This Chapter

Watch principles of heredity video lessons and learn about the genome, Mendel's laws, alleles, Punnett squares and more in this Genetics: Principles of Heredity course.

What do meticulous pea plant studies performed by a nineteenth century Austrian monk have to do with a series of hypothetical flying hamster experiments? Well, we'll begin with an overview of genetics and heredity to start you off along this interesting route of study. You'll become well-grounded in notions of heritable traits, genotypes, genes, loci, alleles and phenotypes, and see what these terms really mean for living, breathing organisms.

You'll also become well-acquainted with Gregor Mendel's first and second laws of inheritance. Chromosome segregation and independent assortment are about combinations, possibilities bestowed upon subsequent generations. We'll map those possibilities with Punnett squares, teaching you how to predict genotypes and match them to phenotypes. The significance of having homologous chromosomes with alleles, or different versions of the same gene, will become clear as we examine dominant-recessive relationships in the context of homozygous and heterozygous individuals.

Of course, there are always exceptions to the rules; we'll be looking at exceptions to complete dominance and independent assortment, such as codominance, incomplete dominance, sex-limited traits, sex-linked traits and polygenic inheritance. We'll also consider what effects recombination and crossing-over can have on resulting generations. Armed with this knowledge, you'll be able to unravel the many mysteries of the hypothetical flying hamster.

10 Lessons in Chapter 16: Mendelian Genetics & Mechanisms of Heredity
Genetics: Heredity, Traits & Chromosomes

1. Genetics: Heredity, Traits & Chromosomes

We view manipulation of genes in our crops and livestock as a recent development. Yet, man has been manipulating the genetic makeup of his food for thousands of years through cultivation and breeding. This lesson will begin to help you understand how genetics works.

Properties of Alleles

2. Properties of Alleles

What is a dominant phenotype and how will it affect Adrian's flying hamster research? Tune in as he studies homozygous and heterozygous genotypes and the phenotypes they produce.

Mendel's First Law & Its Application

3. Mendel's First Law & Its Application

Genetics is a fascinating and confusing world. This lesson will delve into Gregor Mendel's First Law, or the Law of Segregation, explaining what it means and how you can use it.

Mendel's Second Law: The Law of Independent Assortment

4. Mendel's Second Law: The Law of Independent Assortment

Understanding how Mendel's law of independent assortment describes inheritance of genes is as easy as flipping a coin. Grab a few coins, cue up the video and see how.

Mendel's Dihybrid Cross Example: Practice & Ratio

5. Mendel's Dihybrid Cross Example: Practice & Ratio

Oh no! Twice the genes and sixteen genotypes - a dihybrid cross seems overwhelming to understand. Never fear though, Punnett squares will save the day!

Exceptions to Simple Dominance: Codominance and Incomplete Dominance

6. Exceptions to Simple Dominance: Codominance and Incomplete Dominance

Have you ever wondered what it means if someone is a universal donor or acceptor of blood? See how genetic interactions play a key role in this trait.

Exceptions to Independent Assortment: Sex Linked and Sex Limited Traits

7. Exceptions to Independent Assortment: Sex Linked and Sex Limited Traits

More men are color blind compared women. But often, not every brother, cousin or uncle in a family tree is color blind. Why not? How can genetics explain this seemingly complex inheritance pattern?

Crossing Over & Gene Linkage: Definition, Importance & Results

8. Crossing Over & Gene Linkage: Definition, Importance & Results

During this latest development of his flying hamster experiments, Adrian must learn about linked genes and recombinant chromosomes to unlock the mystery of the fire-breathing hamster. In this lesson, you'll look at another exception to Mendel's law of independent assortment.

Human Genetics: Multifactorial Traits & Model Organisms

9. Human Genetics: Multifactorial Traits & Model Organisms

How do we study human genetics when most traits arise from multiple genes? It's certainly more complicated that drawing a simple Punnett square. Never fear, for model organisms are here!

Complementary Base Pairing: Definition & Explanation

10. Complementary Base Pairing: Definition & Explanation

Explore the composition and structure of DNA molecules. Learn how DNA molecules are composed of four different types of nucleotides that pair with each other in a very specific, complementary manner.

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