IB DP Biology: SL复习笔记3.1.10 Skills: Using Databases

Use of Databases to Identify Gene Loci

Use of databases to identify the locus of a human gene and its polypeptide product

  • Following the sequencing of the whole human genome, we now know the exact locus (position) of every gene across the 23 pairs of chromosomes
  • Online databases have been built that are able to locate any known gene or allele
  • Anyone can access these loci
    • One example is the European Molecular Biology Laboratory database (EMBL)
  • Examples of genes that can be located are
    • The CFTR protein, critical to cystic fibrosis, on chromosome 7
    • HBB, a faulty allele of which is the cause of sickle-cell anaemia, on chromosome 11
  • If we know the locus of a particular gene, medicine can establish the location of a faulty allele, which is often recessive
    • A faulty allele can be cut out of the chromosome by genetic engineering using recombinant DNA technology
    • Replacing a faulty allele could lead to genetic therapy
    • Location databases of cancer-related genes are often vital information to researchers, doctors and patients involved in cancer genetics

Use of Databases: Comparing Base Sequences

Use of a database to determine differences in the base sequence of a gene in two species

  • The Genbank® database is another that can be used to search for DNA base sequences
    • Uses a computer data analysis technique called BLAST (Basic Local Alignment Search Tool) to spot and 'line up' similar base sequences
  • A protein common to all organisms is cytochrome C
  • This makes its gene sequence a good one to compare between organisms
  • The sequence is available for many different organisms across all three domains
  • This gives important information about evolutionary relationships between organisms


The use of databases to compare base sequences (and protein sequences) between species