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Genetics – Genome

January 31, 2021


The genome is the complete set of an organism’s DNA. Remember that DNA or deoxyribonucleic acid is the fundamental biologic material containing the code for life. Just like the code that’s running on the computer tablet, smartphone, or other device you’re watching this on. DNA has a specific library from which life as we know is derived. Opposed to the 26 letters we have in the English language, there are only four letters in the language of DNA. Scientifically these letters are called nucleotides that are referred to using their molecular names, adenine or A, thymidine or T, guanine or G, cytosine or C, A pairs only with T and G pairs with C. These bonds form the structure of the famous double helix. In human cells, there are about 3 billion base pairs in the genome, the complete set of our DNA. To restate it, in virtually every cell in your body, there are 3 billion pairs of these DNA letters, or 6 billion letters in total. To put that number into some context, there are about 250,000 characters in the average 200 page book. So each of your cells has the equivalent of about 12,000 books in terms of code.

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