SAT Biology: Origin of Life Flashcards

SAT Biology: Origin of Life Flashcards
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Mesozoic Era
Dinosaurs flourished during this time period, along with gymnosperm plants. A mass extinction ended this era and killed off the dinosaurs.
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Paleozoic Era
Many different forms of life appeared during this era, including both plants and animals. Reptiles appeared during this time, along with insects. It ended with a mass extinction.
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Cambrian Period
The first part of the Phanerozoic Eon. This is part of the Paleozoic Era. It included a huge expansion in living things. Creatures first began living on land during this period of time.
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Phanerozoic Eon
This eon contains the Paleozoic, Mesozoic and Cenozoic Eras. It stretches from half a billion years ago to the present time.
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Proterozoic Eon
A time period that started about 2.7 billion years in the past. Multicellular organisms, including invertebrates, began to appear in this period.
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Archean Eon
We consider this to be the time that saw Earth's formation. Life forms that existed in this time period were very simple and produced oxygen for our atmosphere.
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Precambrian
The Archean and Proterozoic Eons occurred during this period of time, which was about four billion years long.
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Mass Extinction
An event that wipes out a huge amount of species. These occurred multiple times throughout Earth's history, often between major time periods.
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Radioactive Dating
A process that scientists can use to find out the age of fossils and the rock layers they are found in. It involves using a radioactive substance's half-life to date objects.
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Miller-Urey Experiment
This experiment focused on showing that nutrient-rich oceans and a specific kind of atmosphere could result in the formation of life. It produced organic molecules.
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Oparin's Hypothesis
A hypothesis that says that early Earth had a very reactive atmosphere and organically rich oceans, which led to multiple reactions eventually causing complex compounds.
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Development of Life on Earth: Stage Four
A stage in the development of life characterized by the evolution of protobionts. This evolution allowed for the passage of genetic information to offspring.
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Development of Life on Earth: Stage Three
Preexisting polymers began connecting into protobionts at this stage of life's development. These tiny objects were able to metabolize, reproduce and react to their environment.
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Development of Life on Earth: Stage Two
At this point in the development of life, basic organic molecules called monomers began to hook together, forming polymers.
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Development of Life on Earth: Stage One
During this step in the development of life, small organic molecules first appeared. Amino acids and nucleotides are examples of these molecules.
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Primitive Earth
Our planet in its early development. At this point, the atmosphere probably had a lot of ammonia, water, hydrogen and methane while water covered much of the planet.
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32 cards in set

Flashcard Content Overview

This set of flashcards reviews the four stages that led to the development of life on Earth. It covers eukaryotic and prokaryotic cells as well as the idea of endosymbiosis. Theories associated with evolution, including catastrophism and gradualism, will be considered, along with punctuated equilibrium and adaptive radiation. Additionally, you can review the following time periods in Earth's history:

  • Precambrian
  • Archean Eon
  • Proterozoic Eon
  • Phanerozoic Eon
  • Paleozoic Era
  • Cambrian Period
  • Mesozoic Era
  • Cenozoic Era
Front
Back
Primitive Earth
Our planet in its early development. At this point, the atmosphere probably had a lot of ammonia, water, hydrogen and methane while water covered much of the planet.
Development of Life on Earth: Stage One
During this step in the development of life, small organic molecules first appeared. Amino acids and nucleotides are examples of these molecules.
Development of Life on Earth: Stage Two
At this point in the development of life, basic organic molecules called monomers began to hook together, forming polymers.
Development of Life on Earth: Stage Three
Preexisting polymers began connecting into protobionts at this stage of life's development. These tiny objects were able to metabolize, reproduce and react to their environment.
Development of Life on Earth: Stage Four
A stage in the development of life characterized by the evolution of protobionts. This evolution allowed for the passage of genetic information to offspring.
Oparin's Hypothesis
A hypothesis that says that early Earth had a very reactive atmosphere and organically rich oceans, which led to multiple reactions eventually causing complex compounds.
Miller-Urey Experiment
This experiment focused on showing that nutrient-rich oceans and a specific kind of atmosphere could result in the formation of life. It produced organic molecules.
Radioactive Dating
A process that scientists can use to find out the age of fossils and the rock layers they are found in. It involves using a radioactive substance's half-life to date objects.
Mass Extinction
An event that wipes out a huge amount of species. These occurred multiple times throughout Earth's history, often between major time periods.
Precambrian
The Archean and Proterozoic Eons occurred during this period of time, which was about four billion years long.
Archean Eon
We consider this to be the time that saw Earth's formation. Life forms that existed in this time period were very simple and produced oxygen for our atmosphere.
Proterozoic Eon
A time period that started about 2.7 billion years in the past. Multicellular organisms, including invertebrates, began to appear in this period.
Phanerozoic Eon
This eon contains the Paleozoic, Mesozoic and Cenozoic Eras. It stretches from half a billion years ago to the present time.
Cambrian Period
The first part of the Phanerozoic Eon. This is part of the Paleozoic Era. It included a huge expansion in living things. Creatures first began living on land during this period of time.
Paleozoic Era
Many different forms of life appeared during this era, including both plants and animals. Reptiles appeared during this time, along with insects. It ended with a mass extinction.
Mesozoic Era
Dinosaurs flourished during this time period, along with gymnosperm plants. A mass extinction ended this era and killed off the dinosaurs.
Cenozoic Era
This is our current era. It began 66 million years ago, with the extinction of the dinosaurs. The number of mammals increased dramatically in this period.
Cells
These are the basic units that form all living things. They provide organisms with structure and allow living things to function. They come in two types.
Prokaryotic Cells
A type of cell that is very simple. These cells lack membrane-bound organelles. They represent Earth's most ancient type of life, evolving from protobionts.
Eukaryotic Cells
Evolved from prokaryotic cells, they are complex, with a nucleus and membrane-bound organelles. They may change shape. Organisms made of this kind of cell may be multicellular.
Endosymbiosis Theory
A theory that says that certain parts of eukaryotic cells once existed as prokaryotic cells that were absorbed and assimilated into eukaryotic cells.
Evolution
A process that represents changes to organisms over time.
Evolution: Catastrophism
A theory that says evolution occurs based on catastrophic events, which may have led to mass extinctions. George Cuvier developed this theory.
Evolution: Gradualism
This theory asserts that evolution occurs on a gradual and constant basis. James Hutton is credited with this theory, which sees evolution as taking place over a long amount of time.
Punctuated Equilibrium
The idea that life stays in balance and without changes for long periods of time before an abrupt shift prompts rapid evolution. This aligns with catastrophism.
Adaptive Radiation / Descent with Modification
An idea on how organisms adapt that proposes that organisms have a common ancestor but slowly branch out and change to meet the demands of their environments. This aligns with gradualism.
Primordial Soup
Refers to the organically rich oceans of primitive earth that is hypothesized to harbor the first life forms.
Cambrian Explosion
Marks the division between the Proterozoic and Phanerozoic Eons, characterized by a massive explosion of new life forms.
Three Cells in Endosymbiosis Theory
Host cell, respiration cell, photosynthesis cell
In the endosymbiosis theory, the ancestor respiration cell became the _____ and the ancestor photosynthesis cell became the _____.
mitochondria, chloroplast
Evidence of Endosymbiosis
Mitochondria and chloroplasts have similarities to prokaryotic cells: their enzyme and transport systems, how they replicate, and their circular DNA that they can replicate independently.
Protobionts
Membrane-bound droplets formed during the third stage of early life on Earth; the name actually translates to 'early life.'

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