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BLAST Lab.

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by

Pauline Dumay

on 7 October 2013

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Transcript of BLAST Lab.

Comparing DNA sequence to
understand evolutionary
relationship with BLAST.
Gene studied:
Melanocortin-1 also
known as MCR1.
Questions:
What is the function in humans of
the protein produced from that gene?
The MC1R gene provides instructions for making a protein called the melanocortin 1 receptor. This receptor plays an important role in normal pigmentation. The receptor is primarily located on the surface of melanocytes, which are specialized cells that produce a pigment called melanin. Melanin is the substance that gives skin, hair, and eyes their color. Melanin is also found in the light-sensitive tissue at the back of the eye (the retina), where it plays a role in normal vision.
Would you expect to find the same protein in other organisms? If so, which ones?
Yes, I would expect to find the same protein is organisms similar to the humans.
Maybe organisms the preceded the humans.
Maybe gorillas or some sort of monkeys.
Is it possible to find the same gene in two different kinds of organisms but not find the protein that is produced from that gene?
Yes it would be possible.
It is called the gene expression.
A gene can either be activated or "deactivated" but present.
Hypothesis
If the MCR1 gene is found in
the human organisms, then
it would be found in the
organisms of its ancestors.

Procedure:
1. Go to Entrez Gene website and search for "MCR1"
(http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/gene)
2. Click on the first link that appears and scroll down to the section "NCBI Reference Sequences"
3. Under "mRNA and Proteins," click on the first file name.
4. Just below the gene title click on "FASTA".
5. The nucleotide sequence displayed is that of the actin gene in humans
6. Copy the entire sequence, and then go to the BLAST menu
(http://blast.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/Blast.cgi)
7. Click on "nucleotide blast" under the Basic BLAST menu
8. Paste the sequence into the box where it says "Enter Query Sequence"
9. Give the query a title in the box provided if you plan on saving it for later
Results:
human
bonobo
western
chimpanzee
gorilla
sumatran orangutan
northern
white-cheeked
gibbon
crab-eating
macaque
Conclusion:
If you found the same gene in all organisms you test, what does this suggest about the evolution of this gene in the history of life on earth?
It suggest that this gene was present a long time ago; therefore, that it was on of the first gene present on earth due to evolution.
Does the use of DNA sequences in the study of evolutionary relationships mean that other characteristics are unimportant in such studies?
No, every organs and gene are important in an organisms because its makes who you are.
http://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/gene/MC1R
Full transcript