News tagged with phenotypes

Related topics: genes

Focusing in on high-resolution network biology

A central challenge in genetics is to understand how changes in DNA result in observable changes in an organism; how genotype maps to phenotype. As genes and their protein products do not act in isolation, connecting genotype ...

Jan 22, 2014
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Genetic link to gestational diabetes

New Northwestern Medicine research on the genetics of diabetes could one day help women know their risk for developing gestational diabetes before they become pregnant—and lead to preventive measures to protect the health ...

Jul 31, 2013
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Candidate drug provides benefit in SMA animal models

In a new publication that appears in Human Molecular Genetics, the laboratory of Christine DiDonato, PhD reports on their pharmacological characterization of the drug RG3039, demonstrating that it can extend survival and im ...

Jun 04, 2013
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Phenotype

A phenotype is an organism's observable characteristics or traits: such as its morphology, development, biochemical or physiological properties, behavior, and products of behavior (such as a bird's nest). Phenotypes result from the expression of an organism's genes as well as the influence of environmental factors and the interactions between the two.

The genotype of an organism is the inherited instructions it carries within its genetic code. Not all organisms with the same genotype look or act the same way because appearance and behavior are modified by environmental and developmental conditions. Similarly, not all organisms that look alike necessarily have the same genotype.

This genotype-phenotype distinction was proposed by Wilhelm Johannsen in 1911 to make clear the difference between an organism's heredity and what that heredity produces. The distinction is similar to that proposed by August Weismann, who distinguished between germ plasm (heredity) and somatic cells (the body). The Genotype-Phenotype concept should not be confused with Francis Crick's central dogma of molecular biology which is a statement about the directionality of molecular sequential information flowing from DNA to protein (but which cannot become transferred from proteins).

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