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Critical Thinking Questions

BiologyCritical Thinking Questions


Compare and contrast a human somatic cell to a human gamete.


What is the relationship between a genome, chromosomes, and genes?


Eukaryotic chromosomes are thousands of times longer than a typical cell. Explain how chromosomes can fit inside a eukaryotic nucleus.


Briefly describe the events that occur in each phase of interphase.


Chemotherapy drugs such as vincristine and colchicine disrupt mitosis by binding to tubulin (the subunit of microtubules) and interfering with microtubule assembly and disassembly. Exactly what mitotic structure is targeted by these drugs and what effect would that have on cell division?


Describe the similarities and differences between the cytokinesis mechanisms found in animal cells versus those in plant cells.


List some reasons why a cell that has just completed cytokinesis might enter the G0 phase instead of the G1 phase.


What cell cycle events will be affected in a cell that produces mutated (non-functional) cohesin protein?


Describe the general conditions that must be met at each of the three main cell cycle checkpoints.


Explain the roles of the positive cell cycle regulators compared to the negative regulators.


What steps are necessary for Cdk to become fully active?


Rb is a negative regulator that blocks the cell cycle at the G1 checkpoint until the cell achieves a requisite size. What molecular mechanism does Rb employ to halt the cell cycle?


Outline the steps that lead to a cell becoming cancerous.


Explain the difference between a proto-oncogene and a tumor suppressor gene.


List the regulatory mechanisms that might be lost in a cell producing faulty p53.


p53 can trigger apoptosis if certain cell cycle events fail. How does this regulatory outcome benefit a multicellular organism?


Name the common components of eukaryotic cell division and binary fission.


Describe how the duplicated bacterial chromosomes are distributed into new daughter cells without the direction of the mitotic spindle.

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