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The Curious Case of the Carbon Copy Kitty



Author:

Nancy M. Boury
Department of Animal Science
Iowa State University
nan1@iastate.edu

Abstract:

After the media coverage of Dolly the sheep and pet cloning, most students in a general biology or general genetics course will have heard of animal cloning, but it is also common for them to hold a number of misconceptions about the science of mammalian cloning, development, and genetics. This "clicker" case study combines the use of student personal response systems (clickers) with a PowerPoint presentation to help remove some of these misconceptions by presenting the story of a fictitious feline television star who is permanently incapacitated and cannot be replaced. A biotechnology company capitalizes on the need for an exact duplicate and offers to clone the original cat so that the TV viewing public "won't know the difference." Things do not go exactly as planned, however, and the television studio and biotech company end up in court. Students are asked to describe the science behind cloning as well as explain how a clone can be produced that is genetically but not phenotypically identical to the original animal.

Objectives:
  • Diagram the process of cloning by nuclear transfer and track the genetic contribution of each individual involved in the process.
  • Differentiate between nuclear and extranuclear inheritance.
  • Diagram the process of lyonization and its effect on coat color in cats.
  • Understand the chromosomal basis of inheritance.
Keywords: Cloning; X inactivation; lionization; epistasis; nuclear transfer; DNA fingerprinting; extranuclear inheritance
Topical Area: N/A
Educational Level: High school, Undergraduate lower division
Formats: PDF, PowerPoint
Type/Method: Clicker, Interrupted
Language: English
Subject Headings: Biology (General)   Cell Biology   Genetics / Heredity   Biotechnology  
Date Posted: 6/5/2013
Date Modified: N/A
Copyright: Copyright held by the National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science, University at Buffalo, State University of New York. Please see our usage guidelines, which outline our policy concerning permissible reproduction of this work.

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