Proteins,Nucleic Acids,Cell Membranes and DNA Replication:


(NOTE: I will not ask you to draw any of the chemical structures from memory, but you may be asked to identify a molecule or side-group and discuss its properties.)

  1. Proteins:
    1. Name the building block for proteins, and name the covalent bond that links the monomers together into a polymer;
    2. Be able to identify the different parts of an Amino Acid (amino group, carboxyl group, R-group, central Carbon);
    3. Describe the properties of the different side chains (R-groups) of Amino Acids (non-polar, polar, acidic, basic); Explain where each Amino Acid side chain will be positioned in a 3D folded protein, and be able to explain why (ex: Why are non-polar amino acids often positioned on the inside of a folded protein?);
    4. Explain how a Peptide Bond is formed;
    5. Explain why the 3D shape of a folded protein is important;
    6. What will happen to a protein’s 3D shape if one amino acid in a polypeptide is changed (ex: there is an acidic amino acid where a non-polar amino acid should be);
    7. Explain how and why extreme environments (high temperatures, high salt, and extreme pH) affect a folded protein.)
  1. Nucleic Acids:
    1. Identify the building block/monomer of Nucleic Acids (know the general structure of a nucleotide);
    2. Describe the differences between DNA and RNA (including the differences in their sugar, their nitrogenous bases, and their general structure);
    3. Explain why Pyrimidines always pair across from Purines (explain why the size of the pairs matters) (not in our notes, but from a class discussion);
    4. How do nucleotide monomers form chains via phosphodiester bonds?; Explain what is meant by a ‘Sugar/Phosphate Backbone’;
    5. Explain the rules for base pairing in DNA (Example: What base does C pair across from? A? T? G?);
    6. Explain how Hydrogen Bonds are involved in holding the two strands of DNA together.
  1. Cell Membranes:
    1. Describe the components of the cell membrane;
    2. What does the semi-permeable membrane allow to pass and why?; What does the semi-permeable membrane not allow to pass through and why?
    3. How do substances that cannot pass directly through the cell membrane (such as water) get to the other side of the membrane?;
    4. What is Osmosis?;
    5. How do isotonic, hypotonic, and hypertonic solutions affect water movement; How do isotonic, hypotonic, and hypertonic solutions affect cells (red blood cells in particular)?;
    6. What is Diffusion?; Explain why no energy is needed for Passive Transport;
    7. What is Simple Diffusion into/out of cells; Explain how Simple Diffusion is involved in gas exchange in our bodies;
    8. Explain how Facilitated Diffusion uses Channel Proteins/Pores to get polar and charged substances across the cell membranes; Explain how Insulin is involved in the facilitated diffusion of glucose into our cells;
    9. Explain what Active Transport is and why it requires energy;
    10. Explain how the Sodium Potassium Pump works, and explain why ATP energy is required for it to function; Explain how the Sodium Potassium Pump creates an electrochemical gradient across cell membranes;
    11. Explain how Cotransport allows the cell to bring one substance against its concentration gradient, by bringing a second substance down its concentration gradient at the same time (i.e. Know how this process uses Chemical Potential Energy from the Na+ gradient to move Glucose against its concentration gradient);
    12. Explain how Cotransport helps our cells absorb the last of the Glucose from our gut/intestines.)
  1. DNA Replication:
    1. Explain the process by which DNA is replicated (how you take one DNA strand and get two exact replicates);
    2. Know the roles of both Helicase and DNA Polymerase in DNA Replication;
    3. Why is it so important that ‘A’ can only pair with ‘T,’ and ‘G’ can only pair with ‘C’?;
    4. What is a mismatch, and what happens if there is a mismatch?; How does a mismatch turn into a permanent mutation?;
    5. What can cause mismatches to occur after DNA replication (not in our notes, but we talked about this in class)?

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