UNKNOWN FACTS ABOUT DNA

1.DNA stands for
deoxyribonucleic acid.

2.DNA is part of our definition of a living organism.

3.DNA is found in all living
things.

4.DNA was first isolated in 1869
by Friedrich Miescher.

5.James Watson and Francis
Crick figured out the structure of DNA.

6.DNA is a double helix.

7.The structure of DNA can be
likened to a twisted ladder.

8.The rungs of the ladder are
made up of “bases”

9.Adenine (A) is a base.

10.Thymine (T) is a base.

11.Cytosine (C) is a base

12.Guanine (G) is a base.

13.A always pairs with T in DNA.

14.C also pairs with G in DNA.

15.The amount of A is equal to
the amount of T, same for

C and G.

16.A+C = T+G

17.Hydrogen bonds hold the
bases together.

18.The sides of the DNA ladder is
made of sugars and phosphate atoms.

19.Bases attached to a sugar;
this complex is called a
nucleoside.

20.Sugar + phosphate + base =
nucleotide.

21.The DNA ladder usually twists to the right.

22.There are many
conformations of DNA: A-DNA,
B-DNA, and Z-DNA are the only
ones found in nature.

23.Almost all the cells in our
body have DNA with the
exception of red blood cells.

24.DNA is the “blueprint” of life.

25.Chromosomal or nuclear DNA is DNA found in the nucleus of cells.

26.Humans have 46
chromosomes.

27.Autosomal DNA is part of
chromosomal DNA but does not
include the two sex chromsomes – X and Y.

28.One chromosome can have
as little as 50 million base pairs
or as much as 250 million base
pairs.

29.Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) is found in the mitochondria.

30.mtDNA is only passed from
the mother to the child because
only eggs have mitochondria,
not sperm.

31.There’s a copy of our entire DNA sequence in every cell of
our body with one exception.

32.Our entire DNA sequence is
called a genome.

33.There’s an estimated 3 billion
DNA bases in our genome.

34.One million bases (called a
megabase and abbreviated Mb)
of DNA sequence data is roughly
equivalent to 1 megabyte of
computer data storage space.

35.Our entire DNA sequence would fill 200 1,000-page New
York City telephone directories.

36.A complete 3 billion base
genome would take 3 gigabytes
of storage space.

37.If unwound and tied together, the strands of DNA in
one cell would stretch almost
six feet but would be only 50
trillionths of an inch wide.

38.In humans, the DNA molecule
in a non-sex cell would have a total length of 1.7 metres.

39.If you unwrap all the DNA
you have in all your cells, you
could reach the moon 6000
times!

40.Our sex cells–eggs and sperm–have only half of our
total DNA.

41.Over 99% of our DNA
sequence is the same as other
humans’.

42.DNA can self-replicate using cellular machinery made of
proteins.

43.Genes are made of DNA.

44.Genes are pieces of DNA
passed from parent to offspring
that contain hereditary information.

45.The average gene is 10,000
to 15,000 bases long.

46.The segment of DNA
designated a gene is made up of
exons and introns.

47.Exons have the code for
making proteins.

48.Introns are intervening
sequences sometimes called
“junk DNA.”

49.Junk DNA’s function or lack thereof is a source of debate.

50.Part of “junk DNA” help to
regulate the genomic activity.

51.There are an estimated
20,000 to 25,000 genes in our
genome.

52.In 2000, a rough draft of the
human genome (complete DNA
sequence) was completed.

53.In 2003, the final draft of the
human genome was completed.

54.The human genome sequence generated by the
private genomics company
Celera was based on DNA
samples collected from five
donors who identified
themselves only by race and sex.

55.If all the DNA in your body
was put end to end, it would
reach to the sun and back over
600 times (100 trillion times six
feet divided by 92 million miles).

56.It would take a person
typing 60 words per minute,
eight hours a day, around 50
years to type the human
genome.

57.If all three billion letters in
the human genome were
stacked one millimeter apart,
they would reach a height 7,000
times the height of the Empire
State Building.

58.DNA is translated via cellular
mechanisms into proteins.

59.DNA in sets of 3 bases, called
a codon, code for amino acids,
the building blocks of protein.

60.Changes in the DNA sequence are called mutations.

61.Many thing can cause
mutations, including UV
radiation from the sun,
chemicals like drugs, etc.

62.Mutations can be changes in just one DNA base.

63.Mutations can involve more
than one DNA base.

64.Mutations can involve entire
segments of chromosomes.

65.Single nucleotide polymorpshisms (SNPs) are
single base changes in DNA.

66.Short tandem repeats (STRs)
are short sequences of DNA
repeated consecutively.

67.Some parts of the DNA sequence do not make proteins.

68.Genes make up only about
2-3% of our genome.

69.DNA is affected by the
environment; environmental
factors can turn genes on and off.

70.There are many ways you
can analyze your DNA using
commercially available tests.

71.Paternity tests compare
segments of DNA between the potential father and child.

72.There are other types of
relationship testing that
compares DNA between
siblings, grandparents and
grandchild, etc.

73.DNA tests can help you
understand your risk of disease.

74.A DNA mutation or variation
may be associated with a higher
risk of a number of diseases,
including breast cancer.

75.DNA tests can help you
understand your family history
aka genetic genealogy.

76.DNA tests can help you
understand your ethnic make-
up.

77.DNA can be extracted from
many different types of
samples: blood, cheek cells,
urine.

78.DNA can be stored either as
cells on a cotton swab, buccal brush, or frozen blood or in
extracted form.

79.In forensics, DNA analysis
usually looks at 13 specific DNA
markers (segments of DNA).

80.The odds that two individuals will have the same
13-loci DNA profile is about one
in one billion.

81.A DNA fingerprint is a set of
DNA markers that is unique for
each individual except identical twins.

82.Identical twins share 100%
of their genes.

83.Siblings share 50% of their
genes.

84.A parent and child share 50% of their genes.

85.You can extract DNA at home
from fruit and even your own
cheek cells.

86.DNA is used to determine the
pedigree for livestock or pets.

87.DNA is used in wildlife
forensics to identify endangered
species and people who hunt
them (poachers).

88.DNA is used in identify
victims of accidents or crime.

89.DNA is used to exonerate
innocent people who’ve been
wrongly convicted.

90.Many countries, including the US and UK, maintain a DNA
database of convicted criminals.

91.The CODIS databank
(COmbined DNA Index System)
is maintained by the BI and has
DNA profiles of convicted
criminals.

92.Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is used to amplify a
sample of DNA so that there are
more copies to analyze.

93.We eat DNA every day.

94.DNA testing is used to
authenticate food like caviar and fine wine.

95.DNA is used to determine the
purity of crops.

96.Genetically modified crops
have DNA from another
organism inserted to give the crops properties like pest
resistance.

97.Dolly the cloned sheep had
the same nuclear DNA as its
donor mom but its
mitochondrial DNA came from from the egg mom. (Does that
make any sense?)

98.People like to talk about DNA
even if it bears no relation to
science or reality.

99.A group of bloggers who write regularly about DNA and
genetics have banded together
to form The DNA Network.

100.Lists about DNA can get a
little boring 1

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