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Genetic mutation Free Essay, Term Paper and Book Report

A genetic mutation occurs when a DNA gene is damaged or changed in such a way as to alter the genetic message carried by that gene. DNA molecules are made up of two strands, each of which is made up of a series of units called nucleotides linked sequentially to one another, like the links in a very long chain. When a cell divides, an A will always pair with a T and a G with a C. It is simpler to put the nucleotide sequence of one strand, given the sequence of the other. However, very occasionally the insertion of the wrong nucleotide can occur. E.g. a T is inserted, rather than a C ( insertion ) or sometimes just nucleotide sequences simply fail to get copied at all and therefore function differently from its original function. Other than the natural mistake, mutation of the genes can also be increased greatly by external factors such as the overexposure to radiation, mustard gas and formaldehyde. Radiation such as solar radiation can penetrate below the surface of the skin to modify specific nucleotide units of the DNA within skin cells. In particular, DNA is vulnerable to the u......

Word Count: 1052
Page Count: 4.2  (250 words a page / double spaced)

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