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Characteristic inheritance:

The road to Mendel

Biologi Umum
Week-11: 20-04-2017
Early ideas about heredity:
Classical assumption 1: Constancy of species
Heredity occurs within species.
Giraffa camelopardalis Minotaur
Early ideas about heredity:

Classical assumption 2:
Direct transmission of traits.
the parents body parts were transmitted directly to
their offspring.
A misshapen limb was the result of material that
came from the misshapen limb of a parent.
Parents with red & brown hair would produce
children with reddish brown hair, and tall & short
parents would produce children of intermediate
The classical assumption fail:

Taken together, those two assumption lead to a

If no variation enters a species from outside, and if
the variation within each species blends in every
generation all members of a species should soon
have the same appearance.
Obviously, individuals differ in characteristics that
are transmitted from generation to generation.
The classical assumption fail:
How could the paradox be resolved?
Josef Koelreuter (1760, German botanist):
Crossing different strains of tobacco and obtaining
fertile offspring.
The classical assumption fail:

The hybrids differed in appearance from both

parent strains.
When individuals within the hybrid generation
were crossed, their offspring were highly variable.
Some of these offspring resembled plants of the
hybrid generation (their parents), but a few
resembled the original strains (their
The classical assumption fail:

Koelreuters work represents the first clues pointing

to modern theory of heredity.
1. How heredity works: the traits could be masked
in one generation, and reappeared in the next
2. The alternative forms of the characters were
distributed among the offspring segregation.
The classical assumption fail:
T.A. Knight (1790, English farmer):
Crossing two varieties of the garden pea, Pisum
The classical assumption fail:

All the progeny of the cross had purple flowers.

Among the offspring of these hybrids were some
plants with purple flowers and a few others with
white flowers.
A trait from one of the parents disappeared in one
generation only to reappear in the next generation.
Some traits had a stronger tendency to appear
than others.
They did not record the number of differences.
Mendels simple model of hereditary:

Gregor Mendel (1856-1863, Austrian monk):

did the first quantitative studies of inheritance.
1. Parents do not transmit physiological traits directly
to their offspring the characters that an individual
expresses in encoded by the factors that it
receives from its parents. Factors is now known as

2. Each individual receives two factors that may code

for the same trait, or two alternative traits for a
character the two factors came from both parents.
Mendels simple model of hereditary:
3. Not all copies of a factor are identical. Now, the
alternative forms of a factor, that leading to alternative
forms of a character, are called alleles.
The offspring that received the same allele of a
factor is called homozygous.
The offspring that received different alleles of a
factor is called heterozygous.

4. The two alleles, one contributed by the male gamet

and one by the female, do not influence each other,
neither blend each other Mendel called it
Mendels simple model of hereditary:

5. The presence of a particular allele does not ensure

that the trait encoded by it will be expressed in an
individual carrying that allele.
In heterozygous individuals, only the dominant
allele is expressed, while the recessive allele is
present but unexpressed.
An individual contains a totally alleles is called
individuals genotype.
The physical appearance of that individual is
called its phenotype.
When is segregation happened?
Metaphase meiosis 1
Raven, P. & Johnson, G. (2002) Biology, 6th ed.
McGraw Hill Co. pp. 240-247.