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By Jeffrey H. Miller

ISBN-10: 0716749394

ISBN-13: 9780716749394

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By making sure that his lines bred true, Mendel had made a clever beginning: he had established a fixed baseline for his future studies so that any changes observed subsequent to deliberate manipulation in his research would be scientifically meaningful. In effect, he had set up a control experiment. Two of the pea lines studied by Mendel bred true for the character of flower color. One line bred true for purple flowers; the other, for white flowers. Any plant in the purple-flowered line — when selfed or when crossed with others from the same line — produced seeds that all grew into plants with purple flowers.

If we blindly remove samples of 100 marbles, on the basis of chance we would expect samples to show small deviations such as 52 red : 48 white quite commonly, and larger deviations such as 60 red : 40 white less commonly. Even 100 red marbles is a possible outcome, at a very low probability of (1/2)100. 1 Autosomal inheritance can we ever reject a hypothesis? It has become a general scientific convention that if there is a probability of less than 5 percent of observing a deviation from expectations at least this large, the hypothesis will be rejected as false.

Next, in regard to seed color, there were 416 yellow seeds (315 ϩ 101) and 140 green (108 ϩ 32), also very close to a 3 : 1 ratio. The presence of these two 3 : 1 ratios hidden in the 9 : 3 : 3 : 1 ratio was undoubtedly a source of the insight that Mendel needed to explain the 9 : 3 : 3 : 1 ratio, because he realized that it was nothing more than two different 3 : 1 ratios combined at random. One way of visualizing the random combination of these two ratios is with a branch diagram, as follows: 3 4 ϫ P Gametes y/y • R /R (green, round) y • Y/Y • r/r (yellow, wrinkled) R Y • r F1 Y/y • R /r (yellow, round) ϫ F1 F2 F1 315 yellow, round 9 Ratio 108 green, round 3 101 yellow, wrinkled 3 32 green, wrinkled 1 556 seeds 16 Figure 2-10 A dihybrid cross produces F progeny in the ratio 2 9 : 3 : 3 : 1.

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An Introduction to Genetic Analysis by Jeffrey H. Miller


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