Rabu, 27 November 2013

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Mendelian Genetics Experiment of Pea

Heredity is the characteristic  inheritance  from parents  to the offisprings. The law of heredity was found in 1900 based  on  the hypothesis formula discovered  by Gregor Mendel  (1882-1884),  an Austrian monk. Mendel  is considered  to have a big  role  in developing  basic principles of modern  genetics;  therefore he is known  as the Father of Genetics. He stated  that trait determination  factor (factor X, later known  as gene)  is divided  into separated units and bequeathed  randomly.

Gregor  Mendel, the scientist known as the Father of Genetics

To compose  the hypothesis,  Mendel  conducted a series of experiments of pea  (Pisum  satiaum) cultivation  from 1857  to 1865. Based on the experiment, Mendel composed atheory  of heredity,  even though  it was rejected  by the society at that  time. However, after many new discoveries emerged, such as nucleic acid (1870),  chromosome as the carrier of g
The seven  characteristics  of pea
enetic factor (1883), and meiosis (1887),  the discovery of heredity by Mendel was accepted.  It means, Mendel's  discovery was finally admitted after 16 years of his death.

Why did Mendel  use pea plant  instead  of using other plant species? Mendel  thought that  pea plant  fulfilled  several requirements  that could be used  in genetic experiment. For example,  pea plants  have several distinct  traits that can be studied,  have an ability to do self-pollination,  have a flower  structure  that constricts  incidental  contact, and  the offsprings produced  from self-fertilization  are  fertile.

There  are seven characteristics studied by Mendel in his experiment. The seven  characteristics emerged  in different form and easy  to recognize, which  are as  follows.

  1. The shape  of mature seeds: round, or wrinkled,
  2. The color of cotyledons:  green or yellow:.
  3. The color  of flowers:  purple or white.
  4. The color of immature pods:  green or yellow.
  5. The shape  of mature pods:  constricted  or full.
  6. The position  of flowers:  terminal or axial
  7. The height of plants: tall or short.

In the experiment, Mendel used about 28.000  pea plants.  The result showed  that a trait or a characteristic was  transferred from each parent to the offsprings  through heredity  factors.

Hybridization technique in pea plant by mendel
Source: Biology. Concepts & Connections, 2006.

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