Answer to Question #115164 in Cell Biology for Judy

Question #115164
Identify and explain the three processes that lead to variation in the gene pool.
1
Expert's answer
2020-05-21T09:21:49-0400
  1. Genetic drift is the change in the frequency of an existing gene variant (allele) in a population due to random sampling of organisms. The alleles in the offspring are a sample of those in the parents, and chance has a role in determining whether a given individual survives and reproduces. A population's allele frequency is the fraction of the copies of one gene that share a particular form. Genetic drift may cause gene variants to disappear completely and thereby reduce genetic variation. It can also cause initially rare alleles to become much more frequent and even fixed.
  2. Genetic recombination (also known as genetic reshuffling) is the exchange of genetic material between different organisms which leads to production of offspring with combinations of traits that differ from those found in either parent. In eukaryotes, genetic recombination during meiosis can lead to a novel set of genetic information that can be passed on from the parents to the offspring.
  3. Chromosomal crossover, or crossing over, occurs when a child's chromosome is formed from joining together together broken chunks of the two parents' chromosomes. Crossover is the exchange of genetic material between two homologous chromosomes non-sister chromatids that results in recombinant chromosomes during sexual reproduction. It is one of the final phases of genetic recombination, which occurs in the pachytene stage of prophase I of meiosis during a process called synapsis. Synapsis begins before the synaptonemal complex develops and is not completed until near the end of prophase I. Crossover usually occurs when matching regions on matching chromosomes break and then reconnect to the other chromosome.

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