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The Genetics of Eye Color (page 2)

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Author: Crystal Beran

Materials:

  • A number of willing participants who have living grandparents.
  • Graph paper

Experimental Procedure:

  1. Find a number of people willing to help you by providing data about their eye color for your study. It is helpful to have information for at least three generations, so try to find volunteers with living grandparents.
  2. Record the eye-color of your volunteer on a chart. You will call this person Subject A and place them in the “Generation 0” line of the chart.
  3. If the subject has brothers or sisters, collect data on them as well. Do not include the data if the siblings do not share both parents with the subject.
  4. Collect data on the eye-color of Subject A’s parents. Place this information on Generation -1 of the chart.
  5. If data is available for siblings of Subject A’s parents, collect this information as well. Again, do not include data if siblings do not share both parents.
  6. Collect data on the eye-color of Subject A’s grandparents. Place this information on the Generation -2 line of the chart.
  7. If data is available for siblings of Subject A’s grandparents, collect this information as well. Again, do not include data if siblings do not share both parents.
  8. If data can be collected for any previous generations, collect this information as well, following the same parameters.
  9. After gathering all data, begin by marking the genotypes that you are certain of (hint: this will be anyone with blue eyes).
  10. Deduce the possible genotypes for the people whose genetics are not obvious.
  11. Check your answers by determining if the genotype you think they have can produce the eye colors found in their offspring.
  12. You can take this further by determining the mathematical probability that your subject has one or another genotype.
  13. It is also possible to repeat this experiment with multiple subjects. This will give you an idea of the likelihood of specific genotypes in a larger population.

Terms/Concepts: Mendel; Dominant gene; Recessive gene; Genetics; Inherited traits; Eye colors; Genotype; Phenotype; Allele

References:

 

 

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